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Biography & Autobiography Political

Justin Trudeau on the Ropes

Governing in Troubled Times

by (author) Paul Wells

Sutherland House Books
Initial publish date
May 2024
Political, Canadian, Conservatism & Liberalism
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    May 2024
    List Price

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The worst decade in the history of the Liberal Party of Canada came to an end on October 19, 2015.

Justin Trudeau swept to power, ending the ten-year rule of Stephen Harper’s Conservatives. Trudeau’s vision was relentlessly optimistic: the word "positive" was heard eight times in his victory speech, along with references to "sunny ways" and "hope and hard work." But the fates decreed that he would govern in darker times. His rookie government, itself mainly staffed by rookies in federal politics, had to learn on the job in an age of polarization, misinformation, and pandemic, while dealing with the rise of Trump and Brexit, a newly belligerent China, and wars in Ukraine and the Middle East. The moment needed more than a young PM's abundant charm. And almost from the outset, Trudeau struggled to rise to the occasion.

A decade after he published The Longer I’m Prime Minister, the definitive portrait of Stephen Harper in power, Paul Wells, one of Canada’s all-time great political writers, turns his attention to Justin Trudeau, a man of talent, ambition, and trust issues in a time of mistrust.

About the author

Paul Wells is one of Canada’s most experienced political journalists. After many years at Maclean’s, National Post and The Gazette, he now publishes a subscription newsletter at He is a frequent commentator on French-language and English-language radio and television, and is the author of An Emergency in Ottawa.

Paul Wells' profile page