Skip to contentSkip to navigation

A fascinating conversation on American politics

A fascinating conversation on American politics

On Thursday, February 29, at the invitation of Andrew Molson, Chairman of the board of AVENIR GLOBAL, a number of employees of NATIONAL Public Relations—as well as clients of the Firm—gathered to hear our colleague John Parisella talk about the upcoming American elections in November and their potential impact.

It was in the relaxed atmosphere of the Grand Café that Mr Parisella, certainly one of the most insightful analysts on the American political scene, shared his perceptions of the current pre-election period. He also answered questions raised by his presentation on the highly complex political system of our neighbours to the south, whose foundations are rooted in the US Constitution.

By way of example, Mr Parisella referred to the "multiple choice" voting system, whereby American voters use a single ballot paper to express their choice of candidates for federal, state and local office. Our speaker also explained very well another feature of the American system: the Electoral College which, for the country's founding fathers, represented a compromise to avoid potential abuses of the popular vote. In reality, explained Mr Parisella, the American presidential election is an "indirect ballot", because the citizens also choose a list of potential electors linked to one or other of the parties. It is these electors who form the Electoral College responsible for electing the country's President and his number two.

Notwithstanding the current political context, which includes primaries, caucuses, and the choice of delegates for the Republican (July) and Democratic (August) conventions, the US election campaign will really take off from Labour Day, when the debates between the candidates will multiply. Interestingly, as Mr Parisella points out, the debates between the vice-presidential candidates will be of particular interest, as neither President Biden nor Mr Trump will be able to serve another term in 2028!

According to Mr Parisella, this year's American election will see the traditional socio-economic issues joined by those of immigration, abortion, the war in Ukraine, and global stability, which could be disrupted by the likes of Russia, China, and North Korea.

All in all, a fascinating meeting that everyone would like to see repeated to gain a better understanding of the evolution of our relations with the United States. John Parisella, Senior Advisor, Strategy and Business Outreach and Leslie Molko, Chief of Staff and Senior Director, Corporate Communications.


Written by Robert Lupien

Paul St-Pierre Plamondon at the Ghislain Dufour Business Forum
February 22, 2024