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What beef do NDP MPs have with Charlie Angus?

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14.09.2017

Charlie Angus was supposed to be the leadership candidate with the federal NDP roots. He mounted an everyman’s campaign that was meant to update the New Democrats worker-advocacy traditions. He’s a veteran MP. Those were key advantages in fending off the brash campaign of Ontario MPP Jagmeet Singh, a newcomer to the federal party.

But Mr. Angus’s colleagues in the federal parliamentary caucus have all but shunned him.

Only two of the 44 NDP MPs are endorsing him. That’s not an automatic campaign-killer, but it’s a sign that something has gone wrong. Last January, those New Democratic MPs had elected Mr. Angus as their caucus chair.

Mr. Angus had a pretty good narrative for an NDP leadership contestant: He is a former rocker-turned-social-advocate in Northern Ontario, who spoke up for Indigenous people and spoke like an ordinary Joe. He has been an MP since 2004. Federal New Democrats knew him.

But now it’s Mr. Singh, 38, who is viewed as the front-runner. He’s young, a good communicator and a turbaned Sikh who offers barrier-breaking potential. Mr. Angus is 54, and some worry his French is not good enough.

Most guess Mr. Singh will be ahead after the first ballot. So Mr. Angus can only win if the rest........

© The Globe and Mail