Bell: Kenney unpopular until the end, a lesson for Pierre Poilievre

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The last number he gets shows us what we already know.

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Grim truth.

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Prime Minister Jason Kenney ends his tenure far, far from where he started.

The man considered the messiah for Alberta’s conservatives maintains the approval of just 30% of Albertans, a few points less than three months ago.

Ah…in June 2019 after his landslide election victory, those were his salad days, the happier times that didn’t last.

At the time, the same Angus Reid Institute pumping this latest nose-dive had the prime minister sitting nicely with the support of more than six in ten Albertans.

That’s 61% to be exact.

But it was 61% and then a 14 point drop before COVID-19 and a steady drop from there.

The best you can say is that Kenney doesn’t have a faint 22% thumbs up from Albertans, the position he was in when the promise of a best summer ever became the reality of a cruel joke.

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Look at the ugly arithmetic and let the math sink in.

What a fall, an epic failure, a monster dive for someone once viewed by many in conservative circles as a political superstar.

From 61% three years ago to 30% now, more than half of its support has evaporated.

Even with all his announcements of good news and all his dog attacking statements and all his attempts at a happy ending, nothing works for Kenney.

Most Albertans just want to turn the page of Kenney’s Long Goodbye.

Let’s be clear. His fall started before COVID and he didn’t recover after the worst of COVID was over.

As Angus Reid’s number crunchers point out, Kenney was in the doghouse on every issue earlier this year.

For the record, in Saskatchewan, Prime Minister Scott Moe has 57% approval.

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And in BC, Prime Minister John Horgan is leaving office with the support of half of British Colombians.

Before we leave the numbers, filthy as they are, here’s a statistic for those individuals who can’t face the fact that their messiah was a pretender.

Only about 1 in 14 Albertans strongly approve of Kenney.

That’s rough.

What happened?

The blue truck, man-of-the-people shtick was just that.

A gimmick. An attitude. A con man to suck the suckers in.

Prime Minister Jason Kenney departs in his truck after a press conference at a Co-Op gas station on Macleod Trail SE on Friday, April 1, 2022.
Prime Minister Jason Kenney departs in his truck after a press conference at a Co-Op gas station on Macleod Trail SE on Friday, April 1, 2022. Azin Ghaffari/Postmedia

If Kenney’s blue Ram pickup was his symbol, he was fueled by top-notch, high-octane arrogance.

He spoke a good game about elites, but he was an elitist himself.

Those who tried to tell the truth to power were mercilessly sidelined.

Kenney was largely left with a corps of ass-kissers and people with no idea of ​​politics or real life.

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It was no surprise, then, that UCP members gathered for their annual gabfest late last year.

Kenney felt he was the best in the world as the ranks of those who wanted him gone grew.

Kenney told the press he was thrilled, couldn’t be happier and didn’t come across a single negative comment at the convention.

He felt more confident in his leadership than he had in a long time.

A newshound suggested that the prime minister was not listening to what was happening. Kenney didn’t listen.

“I think that caricature is completely inaccurate,” he said.

Case closed.

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Down in Ottawa we have new federal conservative leader Pierre Poilievre shaking things up, getting a lot of attention, telling Canadians he’s willing to fight for them, even with undecided voters taking a look at him.

He has captured the mood of discontent felt by many. It fits in with what many people have in their heads.

He appeals to conservatives but has reached out to others, including those who have not been involved in politics, people who are not happy with the same old, same old and want someone to address their bread-and-butter grievances directly. .

In a new poll, Conservatives are six points ahead of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberals.

A second poll puts conservatives ahead of the Trudeau Liberals who are being pressured by the NDP for gaining support at the expense of the Trudeau mob.

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Apparently all species are tired of the premier.

Poilievre and Trudeau finally meet on Thursday mano a mano.

There are few fireworks in this first round of jousting. This is just the first of many rounds. There is time enough.

Poilievre again demands that Trudeau cancel the upcoming tax increases on gas and heat and groceries.

He attacks a jet-setting Trudeau on behalf of those concerned about their home’s heating bills this winter.

“Will the PM ground the jet, park the hypocrisy and decry the tax hikes?”

Pierre Poilievre, the leader of Canada's Conservative Party of Canada, speaks during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on September 22, 2022.
Pierre Poilievre, the leader of Canada’s Conservative Party of Canada, speaks during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on September 22, 2022. Photo by BLAIR GABLE /REUTERS

Trudeau’s answer is, of course, no.

The Prime Minister insists he is helping some Canadians in other ways. He looked tired. Can’t imagine why?

Um… actually I can.

I’ve heard of dozens of readers betting on Poilievre. Reasonable.

One can only hope he learns the lesson of Kenney’s passing.

Don’t lose touch with the people who put their trust in you.

Do not betray their trust.

Don’t cocoon yourself in a bubble far from the suburban Calgary streets where you grew up.

Be humble. Listen.

This is where today’s lesson ends.

rbell@postmedia.com

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