Broadbent: 'Ed's back!'
As leader of the NDP, Ed Broadbent was a democratic socialist who loved to smoke cigars and drive fast cars. Broadbent led his party through contentious constitutional debates and weathered a western revolt before capturing the party's biggest seat count ever in 1988. After 14 years and four elections he resigned the leadership and became a human rights advocate, and in 2004 he made a political comeback to sit in Parliament once more.
• Broadbent also taught political theory at Simon Fraser University in British Columbia.
• In 1999 Broadbent was back on Parliament Hill. It was the 10th anniversary of Broadbent's last accomplishment in Parliament: the unanimous passing of his resolution pledging to end child poverty by the year 2000. Broadbent was back on the Hill to protest the resolution's failure as a reported one in five Canadian children continued to live in poverty.
• Shortly after Paul Martin took over the reins for the Liberal Party in December 2003, Ed Broadbent announced he would run in an election when Martin called it.
• Broadbent was wooed back into politics by NDP leader Jack Layton, who took over the party in January 2003. "Unlike some people on the left, who get their jollies in life by winning debates, Jack actually likes to do something," Broadbent told the Globe and Mail.
• Layton was thrilled to have Broadbent on his team. When Broadbent made his announcement on Dec. 18, 2003, Layton said it was one of the best Christmas gifts he had ever received.
• Broadbent was 67 when he decided to run again, this time in an Ottawa riding. When he announced his candidacy, he said: "I'm two years older than Mr. Martin but when it comes to ideas, I'm two decades younger."
• The Broadbent rap video was produced by an independent TV production house under contract to the program This Hour Has 22 Minutes. When 22 Minutes rejected the video as too partisan, its producer offered it to the NDP instead.
• The Conservatives complained to Elections Canada, claiming the value of the video exceeded the $1,000 legal limit for campaign contributions.
• The NDP said it cleared the video with Elections Canada before putting it online.
• Some of the lyrics to Broadbent's rap video were:
I'm the one you all should know,
Once more popular than Trudeau.
Voters deserve a kick at the can,
Come out now Martin, fight like a man.
I'll melt the ice like a warm chinook,
With social justice and a great left hook.
Guess who's back. Ed's back.
Guess who's back. Ed's back.
Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee,
It's time for voting NDP.
Program: Canada Now
Broadcast Date: June 15, 2004
Guest(s): Caplan Barry, Carol MacIvor, Tom Thompson
Reporter: Danny Globerman
Film credit: Barry Caplan, TV Factory
Last updated: March 20, 2012
Page consulted on December 6, 2013
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