Saturday, March 12, 2011

Day is Done

Stock follows Jim Prentice and Jay Hill out the door:

Day won't seek re-election

When the next federal election is called, Okanagan Coquihalla MP Stockwell Day will not be listed on the ballot.

On March 11, Day announced he will be stepping down from his role in federal politics at the end of this term.

“Now, after 14 years in provincial government and almost 11 years at the federal level it is time to move on. I hereby announce that I will not be seeking re-election at the end of this mandate,” he said in a news release. “Though there would be exciting and satisfying days ahead in public office, after prayerful consideration, Valorie and I feel at peace with our decision.”

In 2000, Day became a laughingstock (excuse the pun). There was the famous wetsuit press conference. He demonstrated some brain drain of his own when he got the direction Niagara Falls flows wrong. He was snickered at when he brought a "no two tier Health Care" sign to the debates. Warren Kinsella burned him, with a little help from Barney the Dinosaur. Rick Mercer burned him on his "Doris Day" petition, with a little help from 1.2 million Canadians. Day lost the election and, soon afterwards, his leadership.

But here's the thing. After being disgraced, Day stuck it out in politics. Over the past five years, he has become one of the quiet stalwarts of the Harper government. He wasn't an attack dog like John Baird. He wasn't at the centre of controversy like Tony Clement. He wasn't touted as a leadership heir like Jim Prentice.

Day handled major portfolios - Public Safety, International Trade, and Treasury Board. He avoided controversy, and he avoided scandal. He got the job done.

Stock leaves not as a punchline, but as one of the government's strongest ministers. No one would have predicted it a decade ago, but Day will be missed more by the Conservatives than by the political satirists.



  • He wasn't an attack dog, because the PMO kept him muzzled. He had a habit of going too far off script and too often when he spoke he was an embarrassment to the party.

    I think the satirists will miss him more.

    By Blogger WILLY, at 11:00 AM  

  • This comment has been removed by the author.

    By Blogger ottlib, at 11:36 AM  

  • The timing of this decision is interesting is it not?

    He made it just a few days from a possible election call.

    Not that I am inferring anything, I just find the timing to be very interesting.

    By Blogger ottlib, at 11:38 AM  

  • He has avoided controversy, which is great and which surprises me. Good for him. Good luck in the future.

    By Blogger Jacques Beau Vert, at 11:42 AM  

  • I strongly suspect he was an unreported victim of PMS's serial bullying crimes.

    But now he's off to the witless protection program.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:08 PM  

  • Stockwell Day was pushed out to make room for the "great" Steve Harper ;p

    By Blogger kitt, at 1:14 PM  

  • Chuck Strahl and a backbencher also stepped down today. I echo the interesting timing comment.

    By Blogger Ian, at 2:08 PM  

  • The last time a bunch of high-profile Tories resigned before an election as 1993 ...

    I'm not a Day fan, but the media was hard on him in a way they never would have been to either a left-leaning candidate, nor a religiously-minded candidate of a different faith.

    By Blogger Robert Vollman, at 2:48 PM  

  • A coming election forces MPs to decide if they run again or not run again

    By Anonymous INTERESTING TIMING, at 5:48 PM  

  • The last time a bunch of high-profile Tories resigned before an election as 1993 ...

    By Anonymous Tory, party of two please?, at 6:12 PM  

  • Heh heh

    Keep thinking your conspiracy theories that Harper has pushed Day out

    IT WAS US.

    Yes it took us 11 years with our infinite resources and ultimate power to knock off a minister the average citizen cann't name

    But underestimate us at thy peril

    You have been warned


  • I don't think the timing is that shocking. We might be into a campaign in 2 weeks, so the PMO probably asked MPs to make a decision.

    By Blogger calgarygrit, at 7:59 PM  

  • From folks on the lake, our understanding is that "Stock" is looking to avert criticism for the building scandals - and contempt of Parliament - to work on his leadership campaign. He knows the Refom-a-Tories will beg him to run when Harper loses everything he ever stood for (which is pretty much happening). REAL Conservatives are somewhat "pissed" about Harper's spending ways. National debt would have been inexcusable under Preston.

    By Blogger WesternGrit, at 11:29 PM  

  • Stock had an excellent reputation as a minister in Alberta. Made no sense that he couldn't be a leader. And yet he couldn't. Anyways, good post, although Preston alone claims to be 60,000 of the 1.2 million "Doris" voting Canadians you refer to.

    By Blogger matt, at 1:29 AM  

  • O/T but I think it's interesting... maybe it would help either Harpergovernment's or Mission Impossible's public image in a campaign...

    Gross Domestic Happiness Index

    By Blogger Jacques Beau Vert, at 10:25 AM  

  • "Stock" is looking....... to work on his leadership campaign

    Wow intriguing.

    I wish Preston would come back... I respect his sincerity and earnestness.

    By Blogger Jacques Beau Vert, at 10:26 AM  

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