Hang on a second. NDP Leader Tom Mulcair claims he knew the niqab issue was coming. Despite this supposed foreknowledge, he still managed to misplay it and lose massive support in his party's stronghold of Quebec.
Justin Trudeau's position on the niqab is essentially the same as Mulcair's but he must have better advisers, who told him to downplay it. Trudeau has been mostly unscathed over his support for the niqab, which approximately 80 percent of Canadians oppose according to recent polls.
If Mulcair knew that he had a major issue coming, that he would have to confront, and still managed to bungle it when it came up, that doesn't suggest much positive for his capability as a national leader, does it?
With one week to go before the election, NDP Leader Tom Mulcair said "nothing" about his first national campaign has surprised him — even the contentious issue of the niqab.
"I knew that Stephen Harper had been planning to play identity politics … so I decoded right away that this was going to be an ugly campaign. I saw that coming," Mulcair told CBC News Network's Power & Politics host Rosemary Barton in an interview airing Sunday.
"[Harper] has been putting the race card on the table in this campaign," he added.
The niqab has dominated political debate in the last few weeks of the campaign. The Federal Court of Appeal last month struck down a 2011 Conservative ban on wearing the Muslim veil while taking the citizenship oath...