Trudeau takes north end riding

Par P.A. Sévigny le 16 octobre 2008

Justin Trudeau learns fast. He waited till all the votes were in and counted before thanking his wife, his friends, his campaign workers and especially the people of his riding for their faith, their trust and their votes. It was long past midnight and reporters were complaining about their deadlines when Trudeau finally walked into his crowded St. Denis Street campaign office  While it wasn’t Trudeau-mania as some knew it,  Trudeau’s own smile was enough to set off a round of cheers and applause as women began to scream “Justin, Justin.” With his wife by his side, Trudeau gave a short but eloquent speech thanking all those who had been by his side over long months of hard work. The crowd was especially happy to hear how his thoughts were above all for them and all they had done for his victory.

“I discovered I shared the same dreams as do the people of this riding,” he said. “I share their dreams of social justice and I’m ready to join them to fight for it.”

After a hard fight against former north-end municipal councilor Mary Deros, he won his party’s nomination even while the Liberal Party was being torn to pieces due to a  acrimonious leadership race and the simmering feud between Paul Martin’s troops and those still loyal to former Prime Minister Jean Chrétien. After months of hard work, long days on the street and thousands of conversations with anybody and everybody who cared to stop and talk, Trudeau’s victory was one of the few high points in what was to be a dismal evening for Canada’s Liberals. When asked as to what his father would have thought of his victory, Trudeau paused before telling the crowd how his father would have been very happy to see him get elected.

“…and he would have been even more pleased to see I did it my way.”

As both his grand-father, former fisheries minister James Sinclair and his father, former Prime Minister Pierre Elliot Trudeau served their country in its House of Commons, Justin Trudeau will be the third of his family to take a place in the nation’s parliament. While many believe his father’s time in Ottawa may cast a shadow over his own career, Trudeau was quick to answer as to how he too is now a father and how Xavier’s (his new son) future is just as important as his experience or that of his father. When asked as to whom he would turn to if he needed political advice, he demonstrated some of the poltical smarts defined by his family’s rich political heritage.

“That’s easy,” he said. “I would turn to the people who live in my riding.”

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