OTTAWA – The NDP is steamed about media attention lathered on Justin Trudeau and a party that fell out of public favour over the sponsorship scandal while the official opposition struggles to get ink.
The Liberal leader puts a bong in the window and stumps to tax pot and he’s suddenly prime ministerial after the last guy behind the wheel drove the party into the history books with the worst electoral showing ever, they say.
New Democrats can point to a summer tweet by Trudeau about his wife’s pregnancy that made the front page as another example of adoration.
The Liberals are betting the farm on their leader’s popularity.
Privately, New Democrats grumble about the media love-in and why news outlets don’t press the third-place party and expose its weaknesses and vulnerabilities.
The NDP spent the summer often being the only opposition party to challenge the Conservatives – its news releases flooding media inboxes and its critics standing before microphones.
Thomas Mulcair spent the better part of the House recess rolling out ideas and initiatives and teeing off on Senate spending abuses.
“When you go into a scrum and look at the body language of the reporters there, they act like groupies. It’s fascinating to watch,” a party official said about Trudeau’s extended honeymoon since his anointment in April.
Other New Democrats are optimistic that interest in Trudeau is waning and that next week’s resumption of Parliament after a month-long prorogation will remind Canadians why the Grits sit in a corner in the Commons.
Pro tip: Winning political parties also don’t allow process stories like this to be written.