Congratulations are pouring in from around the world to Canada’s Prime Minister-designate Justin Trudeau, who came from behind to topple Stephen Harper’s Conservatives with a majority win using a campaign that promised real change.
Canadians weary of nine years of Conservative rule elected the 43-year-old son of former prime minister Pierre Trudeau in an election that saw the highest voter turnout since 1993. The Liberal Party of Canada swept to victory with 39.5 percent of the popular vote.
Although Stephen Harper won his riding of Calgary Heritage, he resigned as party leader after the defeat.
“To this country’s friends all around the world, many of you have wondered that Canada has lost a compassionate and constructive voice in the world over the past 10 years,” Trudeau told jubilant supporters in Ottawa.
“Well, I have a simple message for you on behalf of 35 million Canadians: we’re back.”
Among the many expressions of congratulations both at home and abroad, were those from B’nai Brith Canada and CIJA, the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs.
CIJA Chair David J. Cape issued the following statement: “We congratulate Prime Minister-elect Justin Trudeau and the Liberal Party on their election victory. We are grateful for the positions Mr. Trudeau and his party have taken on a number of issues, including: support for hate crimes legislation; sanctions against Iran; a range of social justice challenges; and a close Canada-Israel relationship – to name only a few. We look forward to working with Prime Minister-elect Trudeau and his cabinet, along with the opposition parties, on the range of public policy issues of importance to the Jewish community and indeed all Canadians.
“We also commend the leaders and candidates of all parties at the conclusion of a hard-fought campaign. Those who put their names forward for public office and who volunteer to work on a campaign make an important contribution to Canada at great personal sacrifice. We are indebted to them all for their commitment to our democracy. As in elections past, Jewish Canadians were deeply engaged with all three major parties, a testament to our community’s diversity of opinion and love for Canada.
“We take this opportunity to thank Prime Minister Stephen Harper for the deep and sustained support he has provided to Canada’s Jewish community and Israel over the past nine years. Under his leadership, Canada has distinguished itself as a close ally of Israel and a leader in the global fight against antisemitism.
“We also note with appreciation the friendship of NDP leader Tom Mulcair, who has demonstrated support for Canada’s Jewish community and Israel, and who has articulated principled positions on a number of issues of importance to Jewish Canadians.”
B’nai Brith also congratulated Justin Trudeau and the Liberal Party of Canada on winning a majority government. As the country’s most senior Jewish human rights and social service organization, B’nai Brith hosted a national debate series as part of its IMPACT 2015 initiative as part of B’nai Brith’s contribution to the democratic process.
“We would like to congratulate Prime Minister-Designate Justin Trudeau and the Liberal Party of Canada on their victory last night,” said Michael Mostyn, CEO, B’nai Brith Canada. “As the voice of grassroots Canadian Jewry, we look forward to working with the new government on issues of importance to the Jewish community. Our 2015 IMPACT Survey identified many of the community’s top issues and will inform the advocacy agenda that B’nai Brith will bring forward to Canada’s new government.
“At the same time, we want to thank outgoing Prime Minister Stephen Harper for his service to Canada which was characterized by his long standing commitment to the safety and security of Canadians and his principled support of the democratic State of Israel both in Canada and at International Fora.
“We sometimes forget how difficult it is to put one’s name forward and run for public office. We would also like to applaud all candidates for their courage and commitment to our democratic process and thank them for all their hard work and their contribution to society.”