Monday, December 01, 2008

Dion It Is!

Dion will lead the coalition.

Well he was the only real choice. After MI spent the last three days distancing himself from this process by proclaiming to whomever would listen that "...Mr. Dion IS the leader of this party...", and that "...any discussion on a coalition is above my pay scale..." etc. It was obvious that neither he nor Rae would want to taint their leadership aspirations with this potential time bomb.

Time bomb? To quote a former Vice Presidential candidate, "you betcha".

Here are three reasons why:

1. Has anyone stopped to think how this thing is going to play outside of Ontario and in particular, west of Saskatchewan?
2. Has anyone wondered what the long term implications are on the credibility of a Liberal leader who overthrows an existing government with the "support" of the party who would have us carve Quebec out of this confederation?
3. Has anyone considered how the optics of bedding Jack (Robin Hood) Layton and his merry band of lefties will affect the Liberal brand?

On another note, a good summary of the Governor General's options here, today courtesy of Norma Greenaway, of the Ottawa Citizen.
With thanks to JRA for the link.


Anonymous said...

Yes, it is definitely risky for the Liberals. You didn't even list the financial crisis which the Libs would then have to oversee, instead of Harper. Another downside, politically.

However the risk of caving in to Harper on anything he wants was a definite vote killer and the risk of fighting an election right now with no funds and no new leader is also very high.

The coalition may threaten Harper into saving himself somehow, thereby forever changing the dynamic of Parliament. This would be a definite upside.

If in fact, the coalition does become the government, then the only hope for the Liberals is to do a really great job and be seen as a nation builder during tough times. That will be difficult, but a lifetime of over a year, possibly two years, makes it possible for them to change people's minds.

For the NDP, it comes with very little risk, which is why the cabinet allocations are skewed to the Liberals, who will shoulder almost all the risk.

Yappa said...

Harper is trying to paint this as a Dion power grab, but really I think Dion is letting himself be thrown to the wolves, or to change metaphors, he's taking a bullet for the team. He will be attacked mercilessly by Harper and yet have no mandate or time line to do much. Who knows, by May 1 the Conservatives may have turfed out Harper.

tobias said...

We agree. We think that by the time the Liberals will be voting for their next leader, the Conservatives will be "actively debating" their leadership options.