One of the effects of Obama’s triumpph down south has been that now everyone wants an Obama of their own. After all, what’s not to like about someone who’s smart, inspiring, oratorically gifted, tech-savvy, and progressive? I don’t know if people like him are simply few and far between – well, I guess that is true – but also whether it’s just that people with those qualifications just aren’t attracted to electoral politics. At any rate, I was amused by one of the questions on the exit poll I was asked to fill out after voting in Vancouver’s recent civic election. It asked me to rate the two mayoral candidates on various qualities – leadership, compassion, intelligence, etc. – but the last item made me chuckle: who, it asked, was “more Obama-like”? Booster though I was of Gregor Robertson, I had to answer “neither” to that one. After all, “Obama-like” is a title not to be bestowed lightly. And in Canadian politics in particular, I don’t see anyone who remotely seems to fit that title. The last election seemed to bear this out – nobody inspired voters enough to change the outcome from a near carbon-copy of what it was before. The only politician who consistently gets referenced in this connection is the late great Pierre Trudeau. Love or loathe him (both camps seem to still be quite active), his was a dynamic personality, truly a mold-breaker – and perhaps the only Canadian politician in living memory who could truly be compared to Obama. For a relatively brief shining moment in history, Canada had a cool Prime Minister. I don’t see anyone like him on the political radar these days, though. But there’s possibly one thing I may be able to contribute to this topic: a word for what we’re looking for. Clearly what Canadians long for is a “Snowbama” – someone who can melt the hearts of us frozen Northeners with some of the same passion and appeal. I see that this word has appeared out there in the wild, but not – as far as I can tell – in this specific context. So perhaps it will take off. If so, you can say you read it here first!