New Democratic Party Leader Thomas Mulcair might be measuring the curtains at 24 Sussex Drive today but for his defense of Zunera Ishaq's right to wear a niqab during her Canadian citizenship oath.
A new dawn may have arisen over Canada with the election of Prime Minister-designate Justin Trudeau and the end of the Stephen Harper decade. But does this mean the end of Canada's war against ISIS?
Those who ran Trudeau's campaign and marketed this young, handsome man as the future of the country must be congratulated for a brilliant and near flawless operation. Trudeau deserves recognition as a tireless campaigner, who did not falter under a relentless Conservative attack depicting him as "just not ready" for the job.
He had to prove otherwise and he did.
The Conservatives were caught flat-footed, unable to match the Liberals' clever ad campaign, particularly the one starring former Mississauga mayor Hazel McCallion, staring into the camera and declaring: "Stephen, do I look scared to you?"
Another woman from Mississauga also threw a monkey wrench into the election works.
Niqabi Zunera Ishaq, originally from Pakistan, took on the Conservative government over the niqab issue, but instead pulled the carpet out from under NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair.
The Liberals have pledged to withdraw Canada from the fight against ISIS.
Mulcair's defence of her right to wear the niqab's face veil while taking the oath of citizenship shocked secular Quebecers, and was one of the reasons they abandoned the NDP in droves.
Mulcair could've been Canada's first NDP prime minister. But he gave away a kingdom for a niqab, undermining his party's political fortunes in the province that was the source of its greatest political strength.
While Liberals celebrate victory, Conservatives mourn losing the government and New Democrats recover from the shock of dropping from official opposition to third place, an air of despondency hangs over another group of Canadians.
They are immigrants to Canada who are ridiculed for being obsessed with the threat Islamism poses to Canada and the West, and whose opinions are dismissed by Canada's chattering classes.
Monday night, some of them gathered in Toronto to watch the results, and as the red Liberal wave swept across the Atlantic provinces, the shock on their faces could not be concealed by their forced smiles. "Does this mean our CF-18s are coming home?" one woman asked, referring to Canada's military mission in the war against ISIS. No one answered but her concern was justified.
The Liberals pledged to withdraw Canada from the fight against ISIS and to defend the right of Islamists and other Muslims to wear the niqab.
In his caucus, Trudeau has Iranian-born members who want to re-establish Canada's relations with Iran and Pakistan-born MPs who want to forge a closer relationship between Trudeau and the military generals of Pakistan.
Tuesday morning saw a mass e-mail, authors unknown, sent out to many in Canada's Islamic community stating:
Liberals win in Canada, flags at half mast in Tel-Aviv.
1. They lost Harper — their most vocal supporter in the West
2. They lost Mulcair — their second most vocal supporter whose Jewish wife never fails to invoke Holocaust every other second.
My hope is some Liberal MPs of stature will resist this appeal to the latent anti-Semitism that resides in the hearts of many.
Men such as former Toronto Police chief Bill Blair, Toronto Centre MP Bill Morneau and Canada's first-ever Somali-Canadian MP, Ahmad Hussen from York-South Weston, are just three who give me hope some Liberals MPs will resist moves to pull Canada out of the war against ISIS.
Tarek Fatah, a founder of the Muslim Canadian Congress and columnist at the Toronto Sun, is a Robert J. and Abby B. Levine Fellow at the Middle East Forum.