October 9, 2017
By – Leslie Claire Amminson
Jagmeet Singh came out strong in the NDP leadership race on October 1, winning with 53.8% of the vote and overshadowing runner-up Charlie Angus by a wide margin, who won only 19.4%.
Singh was the favourite for much of the race and his victory will come to no surprise to those following the course of his campaign. What did come as a shock, however, was that he won on the first ballot, a feat achieved only by predecessors Tommy Douglas and Jack Layton.
Singh has campaigned strongly on the principles of inclusion, equity, and togetherness. When tweeting about his win on Sunday night, Singh used the hashtag “LoveAndCourage”, a phrase that appears to be the slogan of his campaign, which promotes his message of cooperation in the face of adversity.
Singh spreads this message throughout his platform and his policy. His introduction on his webpage reads, “The values that guide me today, and will continue to guide me as federal leader, are the progressive, social democratic values rooted in my experiences growing up”. His policy highlights improvement of the living wage, tax equity, and justice for marginalized groups such as racial minorities, indigenous peoples, and those who identify as LGBTQ.
He also appeals to media and has a strong personality and image that many believe will resonate among progressive youth. There has been some buzz around whether or not his image has the potential to rival that of the current Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau.
Singh also has a connection to Newfoundland, having spent much of his childhood in St. John’s, while his father was studying to become a doctor here. His family left when he was seven years old to move to Winsor, Ontario.
Singh tweeted “The run for Prime Minister begins now” after his win. Only time will tell how Singh will perform in the next federal election.