A style of politics long considered in decline is experiencing something of a reprieve, even seeing glimmers of a possible return.

The gray-suited technocrats of the center-left are once more a serious force, at the expense of both the establishment conservatism that prevailed among Western democracies for much of the 21st century, and the right-wing populism that arose in backlash to the status quo.

This month alone, center-left parties have taken power in Norway and appear on the verge of doing the same in Germany. They hold the White House, share power in Italy and lead a newly credible opposition movement in authoritarian-leaning Hungary.

Calling it a comeback would be premature, analysts warn. Center-left gains are uneven and fragile. And they may be due less to any groundswell of enthusiasm than to short-term political tailwinds, largely a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

Canada, where the center-left has faced a battle to hold…

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