Michael Laxer

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Michael Laxer
Michael Laxer
Michael Laxer
Born 1970
Toronto, Ontario
Nationality Canadian
Occupation Business Owner/Politician
Known for Social Activism
Political party
Socialist Party of Ontario (2011-present)
New Democratic Party (?-2011)
Relatives Robert Laxer
James Laxer

Michael Laxer is a Canadian political activist and the chairperson of the Socialist Party of Ontario.

Laxer lives in the Toronto neighbourhood of Long Branch, in Etobicoke, where he and his wife own and operate a used book store, the only independent used bookstore in south Etobicoke.[1]

He was a candidate for the New Democratic Party (NDP) in the 2000 federal election in the riding of Scarborough—Agincourt, and for the Ontario NDP during the 2003 provincial election in Scarborough Centre. Laxer was also an unsuccessful candidate for Toronto City Council in Ward 6 (Etobicoke-Lakeshore) in the 2010 municipal election.[2]

In 2008, he criticized the $15,000 entrance fee for the Ontario NDP leadership election as being too high saying, "What you get by doing that is you manifestly limit the number of people who are outside the party establishment, and who have available big backers of one kind or another."[3]

Laxer subsequently began the Ginger Project calling for the Ontario NDP to issue a comprehensive manifesto of polices and build support for their ideas rather than put all their resources into winning marginal ridings. In an open letter to ONDP leader Andrea Horwath, Laxer wrote: "Many party members had reservations relating to the “push to win” strategy that prioritized certain ridings for party resources at the expense of others. We feel that this strategy should be abandoned, as it has failed to produce any tangible results during an election. The NDP should instead adopt a policy that ensures each riding association has the ability to reach every household in their riding at least once during an election campaign. We should force the other parties to have to engage us seriously in every riding in the province."[4]

He and the Ginger Project left the NDP in 2011 due to its cancellation of a policy convention and what they viewed as the silencing of left-wingers telling the Toronto Star, “I was surprised that they would not have a policy convention prior to an election."[5] Laxer was one of two official spokespersons of the party from 2011 to 2012 and is currently the party's chairperson.

In 2014 Laxer ran for City Councillor in Toronto's Ward 6 Etobicoke—Lakeshore taking 1% of the vote.[citation needed]

Michael Laxer is the son of writer, academic and one-time NDP leadership candidate James Laxer[5] and grandson of Robert Laxer.


  1. ^ "A day at the lakeshore". Daily XTRA. February 20, 2014. Retrieved July 30, 2014. 
  2. ^ "Candidates". Vote 2010. Toronto: City of Toronto. 2010. Retrieved 2011-09-17. 
  3. ^ News Staff (2008-07-17). "Critic says NDP leadership race too expensive". CBC News (Toronto). Archived from the original on 2011-09-17. Retrieved 2011-09-17. 
  4. ^ Steele, Andrew (2009-06-10). "Lessons from Nova Scotia". The Globe and Mail (Toronto). Archived from the original on 2011-09-17. Retrieved 2011-09-17. 
  5. ^ a b Cohn, Martin Regg (2011-06-19). "Ontario NDP preens for power — and prorogues dissenters". The Toronto Star (Toronto). Archived from the original on 2011-09-17. Retrieved 2011-09-17. 

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