2008/03/26

Does Dion face ouster as party leader?

Sun Media reported today ( http://www.ottawasun.com/News/National/2008/03/26/pf-5103291.html ) that Stephane Dion is facing a revolt in Quebec which you could lead to his ouster. Apparently former Liberal candidate Pierre-Luc Bellerose, who ran for the party in Joliette, northeast of Montreal, said dissatisfied members will begin the process to revoke Dion's party membership if he doesn't quit as Liberal leader. Bellerose said he is convinced Dion has lost control over the party in Quebec and the organization is no longer following its leader, and claimed to have widespread support for his claims.

The dissidents are threatening to invoke Article 3.7.1 of the Quebec wing of the federal Liberal party's statutes and regulations to force him to resign. The provisions of this article give the Quebec wing the right to strip a party member of his membership.

Have the mighty Liberals fallen to a new low? While there are no doubt many Liberals who would like to see a new leader take the party into an election, it's hard to see them dumping their newly-elected leader before he has had the chance to lead the party into one election. In my view a public battle and ouster of Dion would be political suicide for the party.

The only way out of this situation would be if Dion took a personal decision to resign graciously as leader for greener pastures, without any bloodbath. Otherwise the Liberals had better unite behind him for one turn at the polls or spend a decade in the political wilderness. Where are the kingmakers like Keith Davey when you need them?

1 comment:

Melanie Harris said...

I'm sure many would love to replace Dion before confronting Harper at the polls but a blood-letting now would indeed be suicidal.The only hope of Dion stepping aside is a very quiet behind the scenes initiative to persuade him to do it for the good of the country. A public call for his departure will lead to a stiffening of his spine and a debacle for the party.