Wednesday, February 01, 2006


Mark Watton, a National Executive Member, is asking for feedback from Liberals as to when the leadership convention should be held.

I, for one, think we need a lengthy leadership race, in order for Liberals to have time to get to know the candidates and where they stand. There's no rush and I don't see much of a downside to keeping Harper in power for the time it will take the party to rebuild. Even a May 2007 convention date doesn't seem too unrealistic, although I'd be happy with a February or March convention, if logistical or financial reasons make that necessary.

There's nothing to say the policy renewal process can't take place at the same time as this is going on. For an example of a grassroots initiative by a few Young Liberals at McGill, check out this site.


  • its likely that harper's government is only going to last eighteen months after the liberal leadership convention. if you push it to may 2007, Harper is going to be around for a long time.

    good for me as a small-c, but the longer harper stays in power, the harder it will be to dislodge him in an election

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:35 p.m.  

  • Meh. I think the longer Harper governs for, the more trouble he'll get himself into. I have no problem giving him two years in power.

    Even if you give him 18 months, that sets him up for a fall 2007 defeat. Which would be after any of the proposed dates.

    By Blogger calgarygrit, at 4:00 p.m.  

  • The government WON'T be defeated in the fall of 2007. I guarantee it.

    By Blogger Michael Fox, at 4:11 p.m.  

  • Toronto Tory

    Of course not, the only way the government falls is if the Liberals want it to fall.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4:50 p.m.  

  • I was an early subscribe to the "late as possible" convention date. But I am wondering if the long drawn out battle is what's discouraging candidates.

    Consitutionally, we'd be violating at least two rules by pushing until May, but hey, the last crowd did that with the 2002 convention, so where there's a will there seems to have been a way...

    By Blogger Mark, at 4:54 p.m.  

  • June 2010 sounds good to me... heh:)

    By Blogger Joe Calgary, at 5:22 p.m.  

  • I disagree Calgary Grit. The sooner we have a leader in Ottawa the better. I do not like the idea that Harper will be looking across at a Liberal Party that is leaderless and thus directionless.

    Considering we just went through the worst first 7 weeks of any 8 week campaign and still came away within 20 seats of staying in power, there is absolutely NO REASON for us to be leaderless at the Fall Session. If we lost to a majority government, yah, 12-18 months would be o.k. We lost to a minority government, an election could be called anytime.

    THINK ABOUT IT: U.S. attacks Iran. Harper wants to send troops. House is hopefully sitting. The government gets defeated. Who leads the Liberals?

    This idea of an extended waiting period only benefits Paul Martin and his cronies who can stay in key Liberal positions until a new leader is elected.

    We need a good BILINGUAL leader now.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:46 p.m.  

  • Personally, I don't think we have the luxury of time. We may be pretty happy to let Harper stay in power for a while, but we still have to perform the role of the official opposition -- that is to be a government in waiting.

    We simply cannot be seen to avoid this responsibility. And we cannot discount the possibility that Mr. Harper may want to do something which ought to be stopped (like the 1979 gas tax increase), and that we may have to force an election.

    For me, the sooner the better. Why not have a leadership convention where the people who go (say 13 from each riding) are actually representative of the party and not the ability to buy memberships.

    I realize that a leadership convention where the delegates are actually the people who do the work for the party is a bit unusual, but maybe we should try it.

    Cut the membership off as of December 31, and then lets have an election using the real membership of the party.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:01 p.m.  

  • If you cut the membership off at December 31st, then whoever the Paul Martin crew want as Liberal leader will be the leader.

    Think about it.

    By Blogger Michael Fox, at 6:17 p.m.  

  • Mr. Jenuth, that sounds ok, I hope you personally would be ok with not having a voice, as I have it on good authority (ie. the provincial membership list sitting in front of me) that you are not on the list as of December 31st.

    A good friend

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:30 p.m.  

  • Furthermore, in relation to Alberta there are two ridings in the city of Calgary that have 6 and 8 members respectively. I think it will be very difficult to send more than a maximum of 6 or 8 delegates from those two ridings. There is a rural riding that has 2 members, there is another rural riding that has 4 members, there is another rural riding that has 8 members (thus crushing the urban riding in Calgary with 6 members), another rural riding with 10 members, another riding with 10 members, and one other rural riding with 5 members

    By my count that is 8 out of 28 ridings that some, more negative people than I, would consider "dead boroughs" to use an english term. I think this party desperately, desperately needs to have a leadership race where some new blood is brought in.

    A conspiracy theorist (of which I am not) may claim that Paulberta was an abject failure and that his people have crushed the party in this province. I disagree, 2 members is better than 1, 4 is better than 3. But that may just be me seeing the glass half full.

    A good friend

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:37 p.m.  

  • The party needs a leader sooner rather than later. To me, that means that the leader must be in place by Budget 2007.

    There is no reason to believe that the BQ won't be ready for an election by then.

    7 Conservative seats in Quebec City, and a 10% increase for Charest's moribund provincial party, does not necessarily reflect the re-birth of federalism.

    And there is no reason to believe that the Tories won't want an election if they are in a position to win a majority. Oh damn, we lost a budget vote. Bring it on.

    It is irresponsible for Liberals to assume we know what our opponents will do today or into the future.

    If we take any lesson out of the last election (other than obvious absurdity of the doctrine of Paulpal infallibilty), we know we must plan the our party's activities based on our party's real, pressing needs.

    Our party needs a leader. Quickly. We don't have the luxury of time.

    We could be in an(other) election next spring or next fall.

    And we need a leadership process, that attracts members prepared to work for their candidates and then run or work for the party in the subsequent election.

    We must open the tent. We have to sell more memberships. So many of us once were instant Liberals. And we're still here.

    Opening up the membership is the only way to renew the party.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:11 p.m.  

  • Steve could always get elected to something and go ex officio but to tell the truth, like I really trust official membership lists maintained by the party. If Steve wanted to vote in my riding I would just let him!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:14 p.m.  

  • Well, if I'm not on the 2005 membership list, so be it. I would try and rely on the printed form I received in the mail from the office in Edmonton which says I am a member. On the other hand, some people have tried to make it difficult for me to renew.

    But them's the breaks.

    I don't think that the party is really overburdened with a bunch of Martinites as they probably wouldn't have paid the membership fee.

    It says a lot when some ridings are down to single digits on their membership rolls.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:07 p.m.  

  • CG is right.

    The Liberal party needs a good bit of time to have an open, inclusive and diverse leadership race with a bold debate about where Canada needs to go; from that, a leader will emerge.

    I think hold off until somewhere in the 2009/2010. Maybe coinside with Vancouver 2010 for cross-marketing purposes.

    By Blogger Tarkwell Robotico, at 8:58 p.m.  

  • give Harper... let Harper...


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:40 p.m.  

  • "I, for one, think we need a lengthy leadership race, in order for Liberals to have time to get to know the candidates and where they stand."

    Not to kick you while you'r down(who am I kidding?) but I think you need a lengthy leadership race in order to find some worthy candidates.

    Iknow, I know, Belinda has nice legs but we've already seen what no substance can get you with Dithers.

    Horny Toad

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:53 a.m.  

  • Liberal party need more time to think the length of leadership.

    By Anonymous tuxedo shirts, at 7:22 a.m.  

  • Really worthwhile info, lots of thanks for this article.

    By Anonymous, at 1:24 p.m.  

  • By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:10 a.m.  

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