Thursday, May 02, 2019
How Justin Trudeau Can Tame Jason Kenney
Jason Kenney has been the unquestioned ruler of the cowboy province of Alberta for only a day, and already he is trying to break up the country.
Demanding that British Columbia give him his pipeline or else.
Premier Jason Kenney has touched off a legal battle with British Columbia after his new Alberta government proclaimed a bill that could block oil and gas exports to the West Coast, prompting B.C. to file court action.
While so far treating his arch enemy Justin Trudeau with kid gloves.
And with good reason, for even Kenney must by now realize that he has shot himself in the foot.
This week, Alberta’s new premier took careful aim at British Columbia, pulled the trigger … and shot himself in the foot.
By proclaiming into law Alberta’s infamous “turn off the taps” legislation against British Columbia, Jason Kenney has escalated tensions with B.C., sparked what could become an interprovincial trade war, and undermined Alberta’s legal position in that fight.
Since B.C. doesn't own the pipeline, Justin Trudeau does, and he has the power to punish Kenney's bad behaviour by delaying or cancelling the TMX project.
As Jamie Carroll, a former national director of the Liberal Party suggests Trudeau should do here.
The nastiness of the upcoming campaign is a virtual certainty and there are other areas where Liberals need to significantly bolster their positions (i.e., the perception of their handling of the economy in the Ontario ‘burbs), but given the likely regional splits in this year’s upcoming election, why would Justin Trudeau stick to his promise to build TMX?
As things stand, it is absolutely clear that Trudeau will not win any new seats in Alberta, Saskatchewan or Ontario (he won more seats in ON in 2015 than Doug Ford currently holds as Premier). He already holds all the seats (yes, all 32) in Atlantic Canada. That leaves exactly two places where he has either a physical possibility or a notional hope of picking up new seats: British Columbia and Quebec.
Now, he asked rhetorically, what do those two provinces have in common? A deep, abiding hatred of oil pipelines.
Not just to punish Kenney, but also to boost his chances of being re-elected in the upcoming federal election.
Kenney would of course go ballistic, and the Con media would no doubt be in a frigging frenzy. But I think most Canadians would understand that a deal is a deal.
It was absolutely clear from both Trudeau and Notley that Alberta’s carbon tax was the quid pro quo for Trudeau’s commitment to a new or expanded pipeline.
Why wouldn’t Trudeau proudly stand in Vancouver and tell British Columbians when Kenney axes the carbon tax that Alberta has broken its word and therefore he is not keeping his.
And besides let's be honest, a lot of progressive Canadians would love to see Alberta put in its place, and Kenney humiliated.
Especially since he's already out of control.
And only his Godzilla knows what he might do tomorrow...
So I was happy to see John Ivison write that Justin Trudeau is apparently itching to take on Kenney.
Sources suggest the Trudeau government is actively considering the idea of blocking the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline, which the federal government owns, if Kenney’s Alberta government overturns a pledge by its predecessor to cap carbon emissions from the oilsands at 100 megatons a year.
The logic is that if there is no climate change plan, there can be no more pipelines – a commitment that would likely play well in British Columbia and Quebec, where the Liberals believe they can pick up seats in the October election.
And the reason is obvious: taking on Kenney would also help Trudeau defeat Andrew Scheer.
If only because most Canadians would hate to think what these two religious fanatics and political thugs might do to Canada if they ever got to rule it together...
Along with all these other Con clowns...
For everybody knows it would be the end of the war on climate change, and the beginning of the Con war on this country and its values.
And the good news?
Kenney likes to talk big, but when push comes to shove he usually cuts and runs. Like he did when he cracked down on the temporary foreign workers problem he had himself created.
Only to run for cover when employers who depended on those kinds of workers came after him...
This is not to say that Kenney isn't dangerous, and won't lead this country into a serious national unity crisis.
But luckily Canada also has a strong sheriff, his name is Justin Trudeau.
And as I predicted the other day, he has climate change on his side.
And he will teach Kenney a lesson he will never forget...
P.S. In other business I'm back!! I had to make a quick trip to Scotland and I'll have something to say about that maybe this weekend. But thanks to Callum for handling the comments, sorry I couldn't answer them, but I'll get around to answering as many as I can as soon as I have recovered from my excellent adventure...