“The time I’m going to spend with them is really at the centre of it. The other reflection is really one of practicality. Am I the right person for the job?”
I know a lot of people who dislike Justin Trudeau - some of them from personal experience. A common diatribe is that he's shallow, self-absorbed. I also know a lot of people who like Justin Trudeau, some from personal experience. They say he gets the game that is politics, but that he equally gets the stakes.
Personally, I don't know the guy. Having met him once, I don't feel I'm qualified to make an informed judgment - not about the man, not about his outlook, his leadership skills, his vision or his tenacity. What I like is the fact that he seems to be taking the gravity of his choice and it's potential consequences seriously. Leaders don't vie for press and title - those are just trappings of the job political animals salivate over. Leaders see civil service as the highest honour, the gravest responsibility - and act accordingly. Of course, all that could be dressing - politicians have been known to say what they're told needs said, from time to time. Every now and then, though, you find one who really is in politics for the right reasons.
There will be Trudeaumania; there will be an Anyone-But-Trudeau movement, too. For Trudeau himself, this makes the challenge steeper, but changes its substance none at all. Like all candidates for the leadership of the Liberal Party, if Trudeau steps into the ring it's going to be up to him to show all of us, fans, detractors and ambivalents alike, that he's the right person for the job - not just for leader of a Party, but for Prime Minister of an increasingly fractured country that we all love dearly.
It's up to us to hold him accountable to that. As it should be for all our politicians.