The ABCs of why Trump matters in Canadian politics

While the election cycle in the States is in full swing over a year in advance, Canadians have bemoaned the announcement of our exhausting 11 week federal election campaign. By Canadian standards, it’s a long haul, but nothing compared to our southern neighbours.

Our top four contenders have started their stump speeches and the rhetoric is amping up after the first leadership debate, but the general feeling in the public they’re trying to convince is that it’s too early to really pay attention.

By contrast, Donald Trump is stomping all over America, and anyone in his way. In a short span, he’s been accused of racism, sexism, and a good measure of narcissism to boot. If nothing else, Trump’s no-holds-barred approach to his presidency bid has a few lessons for aspiring national leaders here in Canada.

Be Aggressive, Arrogant and Assertive

We Canadians aren’t necessarily known for our aggression, but the opposition parties would do well to be on the attack. Prime Minister Stephen Harper has been in power long enough to stack the odds in his favour [read arrogant], even if there has been a scandal or two along the way. Make him be accountable, or at least appear culpable, and you may have a chance of unseating the incumbent. To Mrs. May, Mr. Mulcair, and Mr. Trudeau, embrace your inner Trump and don’t take no for an answer!

Be Bold, Brash and Brazen

Don’t be afraid of hyperbole! Everything can be the greatest, worst, most amazing, or most disgusting thing on the planet – just make sure you’re attributing them correctly. Breast feeding? Not disgusting. Mexicans? Not the worst people in the world. Trump Tower? Definitely the most overrated downtown hotel in Toronto.

Be Cheeky, Captivating and Compelling

Don’t shy away from using a little humour! Sure, Canada plays a significant role in the world, and sure, not everyone will get the joke, but your base – your fans – they will know what you mean. If nothing else, you’ll make headlines for your well thought out jibes about your opponent’s beard, flimsy war record, or fantastic hair.

In reality, political campaigns are dirty. Fraught with the best and worst of our human nature, each party will develop policies and rhetoric to appeal to each. I’ll be watching with interest over the next couple of months to see where the discussion goes, and whether the apparent success of the most successful businessman who ever businessed, will have any sway in how that discussion unfolds. Love him or hate him, The Donald has the attention of international media, and as such, is a worthy case study for the PR professional.

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Published by

Ashley Brown, APR

I have seen and done it all, on large and small scales, including communications planning, event coordination, print production, digital presence management, media relations, and more. Bringing in an outside perspective, with an objective set of eyes to pour over your organization's communications programs is considered best practice and yields actionable results. I gather anecdotal and empirical evidence to measure and evaluate the effectiveness of your current communications programs, and make suggestions about how to improve your planning and execution processes, as well as your communications products and materials.

3 thoughts on “The ABCs of why Trump matters in Canadian politics”

  1. I enjoyed this post and I agree 100%! I am glad to see another PR pro weigh in on the many lessons we can all learn from Donald Trump. I love how relevant this post is with Trump dominating the news recently. Thank you for sharing your take!

    Liked by 1 person

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