The New NDP is the definitive account of the evolution of the New Democratic Party’s political marketing strategy in the early twenty-first century. In 2011, the federal NDP achieved its greatest electoral success – becoming the official opposition. The moderation of its ideology and modernization of its campaign structures brought the party closer than ever to governing. But by 2015, it had fallen back to the third-party spot. Were moderation and modernization the right choices after all? This incisive book provides lessons for progressive parties on how to win elections in the age of the internet, big data, and social media.
David McGrane is an associate professor of political studies at St. Thomas More College and the University of Saskatchewan. He is the author of New Directions in Saskatchewan Public Policy (2011) and Remaining Loyal: Social Democracy in Quebec and Saskatchewan (2014). He is a past president of the Prairie Political Science Association, chair of the Political Action Committee of the Saskatoon and District Labour Council, and past president of the Saskatchewan NDP.
In The New NDP, David McGrane weaves a highly engaging and convincing narrative of the party’s trajectory from third party status, to official opposition and then dashed hopes of forming government in 2015. Although the study offers important new insights to the literature on the NDP, its empirical richness and methodological rigour make it an authoritative account of how modern campaigns are conducted in Canada more generally. The study’s methodological rigour, including the combination of theory with a mixed methods approach that draws upon a remarkable range of original data, establishes a high standard for future research in this field.
[The author], an NDP insider, describes the party’s slow but steady climb back under Jack Layton and Tom Mulcair until, after 2011, it was the Official Opposition and a government in waiting. Then in 2015, everything fell apart. The book is like a forensic accountant’s analysis of a startup’s path from concept to riches to bankruptcy.
A new book about the New Democratic party offers exceptional insights into the party’s evolution from an undisciplined ideological group to a political marketing powerhouse. Current leader Jagmeet Singh and his strategists should pick up a copy, and quick.
The New NDP: Moderation, Modernization, and Political Marketing is a rare inside look at how a Canadian political party expands and retracts. It is a thorough examination of how the NDP operated under leader Alexa McDonough and transformed
Ultimately the reader-friendly manner in which he presents an astounding array of data should make The New NDP required reading for NDP strategists. Judging by public opinion polls, it would be in their best interest to consult it sooner rather than later.