Toronto Metropolitan University
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Trumping Canada? Continuity And Change In Canadian Conservative Campaign Rhetoric

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posted on 2021-05-22, 16:39 authored by Daryn Tyndale
The Conservative Party of Canada has been widely noted for its meticulous branding and tight message control. In contrast, US president Donald Trump, representing the traditionally conservative Republican Party, demonstrates a remarkable lack of message discipline: his infamous unscripted candor often descends into vulgarity. Yet, despite his lack of message discipline, Trump was successfully elected president, suggesting that his distinctive rhetorical style may have contributed to his electoral appeal. This major research paper explores whether Donald Trump’s surprising victory may have inspired Canadian Conservatives to alter their own rhetorical strategies in the hopes of achieving similar success. I conducted a qualitative rhetorical analysis on six campaign speeches delivered by Conservative Party leaders in Canada’s two most recent federal elections (Andrew Scheer in 2019 and Stephen Harper in 2015). The results suggest that the Conservatives’ campaign speech rhetoric does not appear to be converging with Donald Trump’s. However, further investigation into other sites of discourse, such as leaders’ debates, press conferences, or party documents, may reveal otherwise—particularly when it comes to broader ideological orientation and the treatment of minority groups





  • Master of Professional Communication


  • Professional Communication

Granting Institution

Ryerson University

LAC Thesis Type

  • MRP