This is a strange sight.
I know, it doesn’t look like much. And that’s kind of the point.
According to best guesses from reporters tweeting about the event, the space had not been used by Prime Minister Stephen Harper since 2008. Harper reportedly held just three press conferences in the theatre in his near-decade tenure as prime minister.
Harper’s relationship with the national press gallery was often seen as adversarial. His Conservative Party even raised money on the notion “media elites” wanted to see him defeated.
Our soon-to-be-gone* Prime Minister was so paranoid that ditched speaking to the press in favor of staged photo ops that gave him total control.
Our soon-to-be Prime Minister looks to be much more inclusive, and not just because of one press conference.
The prime minister designate has already invited Green Leader Elizabeth May to be part of the Canadian delegation to the United Nations summit on climate change in Paris at the end of next month.
And he intends to invite NDP Leader Tom Mulcair and whomever is leading the Conservative party — be it Stephen Harper or an interim leader — as well, along with various non-governmental organizations and environmentalists, insiders say. […]
Trudeau’s inclusive approach is in stark contrast to that adopted by Harper’s defeated Conservative government, which strictly limited participation in delegations to previous climate summits, entirely excluding opposition parties.
I have my doubts about Trudeau, but it’s moves like this which ease them.
* Technically, the Prime Minister is exactly that, a minister the party in power votes to be their leader. This person doesn’t even need to be elected! As a consequence, Trudeau is still merely the leader of the Liberal party, and Harper is still the Prime Minister, until the new Parliament sits on November 4th. Between now and then, we’re in a bit of a quantum superposition.