Justin Trudeau's Election Campaign Is Creepily Similar To His Dad's In 1972

Like father, like son. History keeps repeating itself with Pierre and Justin Trudeau.
Senior Creator
Justin Trudeau's Election Campaign Is Creepily Similar To His Dad's In 1972

It seems like history is repeating itself with Canada's most well known, and only, political father-son dynasty. Pierre Trudeau's election in 1972 is weirdly similar to Justin Trudeau's in 2019. The apple really doesn't fall far from the tree. 

Pierre's campaign in 1972 has a lot of similarities to Justin's in 2019. And if the similarities continue, Pierre's history in politics could predict Justin's. 

The similarities between the campaigns of both Trudeaus aren't exactly positive ones. Both came out swinging in their first campaigns to become Prime Minister but were lacking during their second go around. 

"The resemblance is in the disappointment with Trudeau senior and now Trudeau junior. It’s remarkably similar because of the magnetism both of them showed in their initial campaigns," said Robert Bothwell, University of Toronto professor, to the National Post. 

Both won the first federal elections they ran for as leaders of the Liberal Party in 1968 and 2015. After getting the majority vote, both Pierre and Justin campaigned for a second term. 

Pierre won a minority in his second federal election and with current polls showing the Liberals and Conservatives in a deadlock, it's unlikely any party will get a majority in this election either. So Justin could once again follow in his father's footsteps and get a second term as Prime Minister with a minority government. 

During this election, there has been lots of speculation about a Liberal-NDP coalition in a minority government situation. And while neither leader has said anything to confirm that specifically but they haven't denied it either. 

That brings up another similarity between the two Trudeaus and their re-election campaigns. 

According to Maclean's, after the 1972 election, Pierre relied on "NDP support in order to remain to power with a minority government."

"History does repeat itself, I guess, in some ways," John English, director of the Bill Graham Centre for Contemporary International History at University of Toronto’s Monk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy, told Maclean's

There's also a similarity between relations with the U.S. for both Trudeaus. When Pierre was elected in 1972 there was unease about Richard Nixon and in 2019 there's unease about Donald Trump. 

"They had Nixon and now we have Trump. The parallels are surprisingly strong," said English. 

After Pierre's second term as Prime Minister when he led a minority government he was actually able to rebound politically and win a majority in 1974. He then stayed in power for most of the following decade.

There was also an eerie similarity between Justin's campaign for this election and Pierre's campaign in 1980. Both father and son had their campaign planes hit and damaged by a media bus carrying reporters almost 40 years apart. 

Pierre served as Prime Minister for 15 years and 164 days which makes him Canada's third longest-serving Prime Minister

Only time will tell if Justin will continue to follow in his father's footsteps. 

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Lisa Belmonte
Senior Creator
Lisa Belmonte is a Senior Creator for Narcity Media focused on government of Canada jobs and is based in Ontario.