2006/02/04

How long to rebuild the Liberal party

Norman Webster of the Montreal Gazette has the following words of wisdom about the Liberal leadership race:

"The Harpers should go ahead and order new drapes for 24 Sussex Dr. It looks like they’ll be living there for some time.

That’s the message from the flailings of the federal Liberals. People are withdrawing from the leadership race so quickly they have to co-ordinate their press conferences. Not even two weeks from the election and we’ve already lost all of the party’s front-rankers: Frank McKenna, John Manley, Brian Tobin and Allan Rock.

Each of these men had a national profile, support within the party and years of experience in government at the federal or provincial level. Each could have slipped into harness fairly quickly as the new leader.

But they’ve all been hit by a sudden desire to spend more time with their families. Which is to say they have concluded there is no quick fix for the Liberal malady.

The party needs a major policy rethink. It must reconnect with Quebec – where Paul Martin, curiously, got out of step. It absolutely must end the bitter internal feud that has so sapped its strength. It will take years of toil and travel and bean suppers in church basements before the Liberals are ready to return to power.

How many years? Probably six at least – two elections – and even then there’s no guarantee, far from it. Stephen Harper will be in his prime by then and might even have learned how to tell a joke. You can see why the heavyweights are giving this a pass….

Belinda Stronach? Don’t get me started. Backstabber, perennial candidate for leader before accomplishing anything, unilingual, deeply untrustworthy, Stronach embodies almost everything the Liberal Party should be running away from. Surely, there are stronger female candidates than this."

2 comments:

Winston said...

The fact that Belinda Stronach is being touted as a cabndidate for the Liberal leadership shows how desperate the Liberal party is. She shouldn't get elected as dog catcher. Woe is the Liberal party when this is the best they can do. I agree with Dipper. Run Jack Layton and unite the left.

Billy Byrne said...

Harper will probably get a majority next election unless he screws up royally and ,maybe another one after that. I guess the prospect of 5-10 years as leader of the Opposition wasn't appealing to McKenna, Manley or Tobin.