“For all my history, I’m a political neophyte” but he couldn’t wait to run “until I’m 50 and have the gravitas and all that stuff.”
Story says Trudeau “purposely avoided a safe seat” for working-class Papineau
I think it’s safe to say that, even if he were to win three majorities, Stephen Harper is unlikely to ever receive a glowing profile in the oversize American fashion glossy W magazine, much less the September edition (the most important issue of the year for a fashion mag).
But, as the Canadian media have been telling us since Trudeau père died in 2000, Justin Trudeau is no mere mortal, no dull economist from a family of accountants. So in a way it’s no surprise that an American publication finally jumped on the bandwagon.
W's enthusiasm, was rewarded with some pretty good access. The profile titled “The Son also Rises” includes quotes not only from Trudeau, but also from his wife and mother. There's also a quote from pollster Michael Adams, who took a breather from telling us how different we are from Americans, to speak to a US magazine. Some excerpts:
While Canadians prefer understatement and scorn comparisons to their neighbor to the south, they are apt to compare the Trudeaus to the Kennedys—as close as it gets to Canadian royalty. Last year, when Justin won his party’s nomination to run for a seat in the House of Commons, 40 percent of Canadians polled said they’d like to see him as the next leader of the Liberal Party—even though he has yet to hold office. Now 36, he’s a rising political star and likely to become a member of Parliament when he runs in the next federal election, which is expected to take place in the coming months. Few doubt that he’ll make a bid at some point for the leadership of the Liberals—the party his father dominated for 16 years and, for now, the opposition.
To the party faithful in search of the lost Trudeau magic, Justin is the future, the one who can draw a younger generation into the political fold, much as Barack Obama has done. [Don’t speak too soon!] To his detractors he’s an inexperienced lightweight simply leveraging his father’s fame.
Handsome and boyish, his dark curls flopping into his blue eyes, he’s dressed in tidy jeans and a navy blazer. With his mother’s good looks and warmth and his father’s élan and idealism, he has an ease and buoyancy about him that makes it hard not to like him. “For all my history, I’m a political neophyte,” he says. “The actual mechanisms of politics are something that I’ve stayed away from all my life, deliberately.”
After studying English literature at McGill University, Trudeau became a schoolteacher and later earned a master’s degree in environmental geography [his official bio refers only to “graduate studies” – not a master’s]. A regular feature in local society pages, he chaired a national youth service program for four years and has also spoken out on winter-sports safety after his brother Michel, the youngest of the Trudeaus’ three sons, was killed while skiing in 1998 when an avalanche sent him into an icy lake in British Columbia. Increasingly, Justin felt that to effect change, he had to enter the fray, not “wait until I’m 50 and have the gravitas and all that stuff.”
Finally, there’s this:
In Canada candidates may choose where to run [clearly, the author Diane Solay has never met Doug Finlay], and [Trudeau] purposely avoided a safe seat in an affluent, mixed English-French area, selecting instead a working-class district of immigrants and Francophone professionals where his two rivals had long-standing ties. His against-the-odds win there and the fact that his former opponents are now cochairing his run for the House of Commons are all part of his personal campaign to “prove my chops in politics and work my way up from the grass roots,” he says. “I want to demonstrate that it’s all about what I bring, not the name and not the past.”
Hmm, I wonder where W got the idea that that’s how it played out As anyone who follows Canadian politics knows, Trudeau first set his sights on a nomination in the safe Liberal seat of Outremont, but Stéphane Dion had other ideas, thinking he could afford to run one of his professor pals there instead.