| OTTAWA, April 14
OTTAWA, April 14 Canada's glamorous rising
political star, Justin Trudeau, was set to capture the
leadership of the Liberal Party on Sunday and begin contesting
seven years of Conservative rule.
The 41-year-old son of the swashbuckling former Prime
Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau, Justin is the overwhelming
favorite in the election, with results due on Sunday evening.
Trudeau campaigned largely on a message of hope, similar to
that on which Barack Obama campaigned in the United States, and
said detailed policy pronouncements will come later, ahead of a
federal election due in 2015.
"What Justin Trudeau is benefiting from is probably having
the right message at the right times in terms of a swing back to
less hyperbole and negativism," said Nik Nanos of polling firm
Trudeau will be the Liberals' seventh leader in the last
decade, including two interim bosses, compared with just two
leaders between 1919 and 1958.
That reflects the harder times facing the party, which ran
Canada for two-thirds of the 20th century.
In the 2011 election, the Liberals fell to third place for
the first time, behind the Conservatives on the right and the
New Democrats on the left.
But opinion polls show a Liberal Party led by Trudeau would
overtake both the NDP and the Conservatives, amid voter fatigue
at the ruling party.
Trudeau, a former teacher, is 12 years younger than Prime
Minister Stephen Harper and 17 years younger than Thomas
Mulcair, leader of the NDP.
A Nanos survey distributed on Thursday had Trudeau eclipsing
Mulcair on most leadership indicators and coming in within
striking distance of Harper. And a Nanos poll released on Friday
had the Liberals ahead of the Conservatives 35.4 percent to 31.3
Trudeau favors legalization of marijuana and some form of
carbon pricing. He opposes the Northern Gateway pipeline to take
oil from Alberta to British Columbia, on the grounds that it
would cross pristine wilderness, but does not oppose the
Keystone XL pipeline to the United States.