Harper's Replacements - Part 2

Part Two: Jason Kenney                  Part 1 Part 2 Part 3

May 1st, 2013 | J. Hodgson 

In 2015, I predict that Stephen Harper will run and win the general election. I think the NDP and the Liberals will kill each other for the same voters and the Conservatives will tear through the middle with an even bigger majority than they currently have now.

What happens next?

I predict Harper will serve three out of four years and then step down. This will open up a leadership race within the Conservative Party. There will undoubtedly be many people lining up for the job, but there are a few frontrunners.

10 Reasons Jason Kenney Should Be Leader After Harper

#1. Jason Kenney is a work-a-holic.

He was voted ‘Hardest Working Parliamentarian’ by Maclean’s magazine in 2011. Full work days at the office, followed by endless guest appearances in the off-hours, have led Jason Kenney to become the face of the Conservative Party. A future Prime Minister needs to know how to work hard on a daily basis, and Jason Kenney does it with a smile.

#2. Jason Kenney wins over immigrants.

Canada’s fertility rate dropped below the replacement rate right around the time that Pierre Trudeau allowed for mass abortion and easy divorce. The fertility rate has never recovered. In 1990, Mulroney realized that future population growth required mass immigration and we’ve been importing future generations ever since.

Jason Kenney was put in charge of reaching out to immigrant communities and over the past 5 years he’s progressively won over hearts and minds...and votes.

Every year that passes, immigrants become more important to the national makeup of Canada and Jason Kenney is the gatekeeper.

#3. Jason Kenney convinced Ralph Klein to abolish gold-plated pensions.

Jason Kenney was once in charge of the Association of Alberta Taxpayers and started a petition against the big pensions that politicians were receiving. Premier Ralph Klein took him to task with a verbal dressing down, but Kenney held his ground. Ralph Klein then changed his mind about the issue and agreed with Kenney.

Change was effected by a 24 year old upstart against Alberta’s greatest Premier.

#4. Jason Kenney helped found the Canadian Taxpayer’s Association.

Jason’s work with the Association of Alberta Taxpayer’s led to the foundation of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation. This is a right-leaning think tank and advocacy group dedicated to accountability and fiscal restraint in government. This group has done enormous work to promote the interests of ordinary taxpayers. A fiscal conservative as Prime Minister is a must-have after the recessionary compromises that Stephen Harper had to make.

#5. Jason Kenney is single.

Not encumbered by a wife and kids, Jason Kenney can dedicate himself more fully to the job. 

Not since Conservative Prime Minister R.B. Bennett has an unattached Conservative held office, and in today’s modern age of individualism and rising levels of solo living, Kenney will reflect the changing nature of our society.

#6. Jason Kenney is a schlub.

With a permanent five o’clock shadow and an ever increasing waistline, Jason Kenney has the shambolic look of a Ralph Klein or an early-era Stephen Harper. This isn’t meant as an insult, it is actually an asset. 

People feel they can relate to a leader, who is more like themselves and Canada isn’t exactly a nation of sharply dressed fitness nuts. Justin Trudeau looks like a fashion model from Italy or something. That’s fine for the school girls, but voters want someone who can feel their pain.

Kenney can sell that pain just by being himself.

#7. Jason Kenney is an all around conservative.

His voting record and past history will galvanize conservatives and kick-start a grassroots excitement that is currently waning under Stephen Harper. Here he is describing conservatism at the recent Manning Centre for Promoting Democracy conference...

Kenney on conservative values: ”hard work and personal responsibility, a respect for tradition, a belief in family as the most important social institution, a respect for religious faith, a respect for law and order that ensures safe streets and values victims’ rights over those of criminals, a belief in entrepreneurship and initiative and risk-taking, the freedom to take chances and reap the rewards of initiative free of crippling taxes and red tape, a belief in an opportunity to succeed by playing by the rules without the over-developed liberal sympathy for those who refuse to do so, belief in a principled, democratic foreign policy that stands up for freedom and fundamental values and a pride in our Canadian armed forces and our history of military sacrifice and glory.”Macleans magazine, March 10th, 2013

Works for me.

#8. Jason Kenney knows how to shut up Justin Trudeau.

It’s no secret that Justin is not a fan of Jason Kenney. It’s also no secret that Jason Kenney is not a fan of Justin Trudeau. When it comes to winning with an issue, Kenney knows how to play an opponent. Kenney’s plain spoken, common sense rhetoric plays well to a large segment of the population outside of the politically correct sphere. Justin Trudeau is a product of this sphere, and it leaves him open to embarrassing gaffes.

Exactly what the Tories need during an election.

#9. He’s got a base in the West.

Kenney will continue to galvanize the base of the party out West. Since the vast majority of Conservative Party fundraising comes from Southern Alberta and Eastern British Columbia, this ensures that the party will continue to have access to big money and regional awareness.

#10. The man has a vision.

People seem keenly aware that Kenney will beat a different path than Harper. More vibrant, more confident, and more bold. After a decade of setting the stage, perhaps Canada will be ready for a new way.