Road to Redemption: The Liberal Party of Canada, 2006–2019
Despite being described as the most successful political party in any western democracy, the Liberal Party of Canada experienced its worst electoral defeat in 2011. Reduced to third-party status, the Liberal Party of Canada was seen by some experts as a spent force doomed to disappear from the Canadian political scene. And yet, just four years later, the party surged ahead once more, winning one of the most decisive elections in Canadian history.
Road to Redemption offers a detailed exploration of this stunning reversal. It begins by outlining weaknesses in the party’s organization and culture, weaknesses that existed long before the 2011 rout but were ignored while the party continued to win elections. Finally brought to light by the disastrous 2011 electoral campaign, these weaknesses were then systematically tackled by party elites and activists in a concerted effort to rebuild and restructure the party. Their efforts culminated in the state-of-the-art campaigns run by Justin Trudeau’s Liberals in 2015 and 2019. Brooke Jeffrey argues that the remarkable turnaround of 2015 confirms the Liberal Party’s exceptional ability to redefine itself and adapt to changing circumstances, a singular strength and the principal reason for the party’s enduring appeal. Despite being reduced to a minority government in 2019, Jeffrey concludes that the Liberal Party and leader Justin Trudeau can take advantage of this second chance to further strengthen and consolidate the party’s position for years to come.
- World Rights
- Page Count: 336 pages
- Dimensions: 6.3in x 1.3in x 9.1in
"A major contribution to research, Road to Redemption examines the organization and leadership of one political party in the context of its fluctuating fortunes in Parliament and with Canadian voters. In its focus and detail, this is an exceptional study. Although Brooke Jeffrey’s intent is to study the Liberal Party, some of the most interesting parts of the work lie in the comparisons and contrasts that invariably arise between the Liberals and their parliamentary opponents. This is a rare subject in works on Canadian parties."
David E. Smith, Department of Politics and Public Administration, Ryerson University and author of The Constitution in a Hall of Mirrors: Canada at 150
"Road to Redemption is the latest in a grand tradition of books examining the Liberal Party of Canada. Brooke Jeffrey has authored a recent historical account that weaves in details not seen elsewhere. It is a fitting follow-up to Divided Loyalties and a welcome addition to the Canadian political party literature."
Alex Marland, Department of Political Science, Memorial University and author of Whipped: Party Discipline in Canada
Author InformationBrooke Jeffrey is a professor in the Department of Political Science at Concordia University and long-time former Liberal Insider.
Table of contentsIntroduction
1. A Party on the Brink
2. Unintended Consequences: The 2006 Leadership Race
3. The Dion Era: Disappointment and Disarray
4. Campaign Woes: The Disastrous 2008 Election
5. Third Try: The Ignatieff Solution
6. The Near-Death Experience: The 2011 Election
7. Rebuilding and Renewal: The Liberal Way
8. Redemption: The 2015 Election
9. Trudeau Takes Charge: A New Liberal Order?
List of Interviews
Subjects and Courses