Former student politicians eyeing jobs in PMO

Many of you are likely aware that we are currently in the first leg of one of the longest federal elections since Confederation. And, for the first time since the existence of the New Democratic Party (NDP), the party has a realistic shot at forming government. This means that former student politicians and post-secondary education activists who were involved with the Canadian Federation of Students (CFS) and who have supported the party could soon find themselves working in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO). Who might end up working in an NDP PMO?

Let’s start with former CFS chairperson, George Soule who has been working for Thomas Mulcair in the Leader of the Official Opposition’s office as Associate Director of Media. Before that, Soule was an NDP campaign spokesperson during the 2011 federal election which saw Jack Layton’s NDP thrusted into official opposition. Another longtime CFS staffer Lucy Watson also joined the Dippers earlier this year as National campaign co-ordinator (it remains unclear if she is on leave from the CFS, if she has left the organization altogether or if she was one of the employees who was caught up in the alleged internal labour dispute within the Federation). Former CFS national treasurer and Director of information technology Ben Lewis is currently a national NDP communications officer. Brad Lavigne, former CFS chairperson and close advisor to the late Jack Layton, returned to the NDP a a senior campaign strategist following his short stint in the private sector as a consultant with Hill+Knowlton Strategies.

While others from labour unions and left-wing activists will likely come out of the woodwork, it’s hard to know whether Thomas Mulcair will want to surround himself with those on the more extreme left. Regardless, this piece gives you some food for thought on who could very well be walking the corridors of power in the event that the NDP were to form government once the votes have been counted on October 19, 2015. 

  • bill smith

    Well, a trait of the left is for new leaders to throw activists under the bus. Kim Jong Un blew up his uncle, Lenin / Stalin had purges, Castro sent Che on a suicide mission in Africa, that didn’t work to he was sent to Bolivia and did die, Ho Chi Mihn treated the South’s VC as traitors, etc… the reason is, left leaders sell a utopia to activists… once in power, there is no way the utopia can be achieved so the activists are the first people to turn against the leader.. so good luck to any activists who were sold a pipe dream by the NDP.. 1, it ain’t happening, 2, you will be the first to be disappointed and 3 you will be shunned in favour of more mainstream people…. and 4, if you look at the case of USA, might eventually cause a back-lash with ultra-right nut cases under serious consideration.