In first leaders debate, Trudeau hints at another election in 18 months if denied majority

DM

Liberal leader Justin Trudeau came out swinging against the Conservative, New Democrat and Bloc Québécois leaders, who criticized his decision to plunge Canada into an election and attacked him whenever possible during two hours of the first “decisive” debate in French. The debate, organized by Quebecor-owned TV network TVA, was the first of three hosting Trudeau, Conservative leader Erin O’Toole, NDP leader Jagmeet Singh and Bloc Québécois leader Yves-François Blanchet in this election. There were three themes for the evening: the pandemic, social issues, and the “Canada of tomorrow.” The stakes were high for each leader, as a Leger-Le Journal-TVA poll focused on Quebec voting intentions published Thursday morning shows that the chances of a run-off Liberal win in a majority of the province’s ridings is increasingly unlikely as many ridings turn into three-way races between Conservatives, Liberals and the Bloc. During the debate, Trudeau was grilled by opposition members and even debate moderator Pierre Bruneau regarding his decision to launch Canada into an “unnecessary” election during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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