Thursday, October 20, 2011

Liberal Renewal

There was a lot of ink spilled about Liberal rebuilding in the wake of the May 2nd shellacking - both among pundits and party members. Although much of that talk has cooled, with January's biennial convention approaching, it's likely time to renew the renewal discussion.

What I like about the renewal discussion so far is that it has happened organically, from all corners of the party. There has been talk about the road ahead at riding association meetings, in Facebook groups, and on blogs. One of these ad hoc renewal groups I've been involved with started up in May with a flurry of "reply all" e-mails among 20 or 30 passionate Liberals. After sharing our rants and ideas, we decided to hold a face-to-face meeting in the heart of Liberal Country - Canmore, Alberta.

So on the August long weekend, an eclectic group of Liberals met to talk about the future of our party - we had grey haired PMO staffers (from a time when there was a Liberal PMO), organizers from the west coast, party officials from Quebec, and new Liberals from out east. Many of us had never met in person before, so it was a great opportunity to throw a mix of perspectives and personalities into the blender.

We gave presentations and shared ideas. There wasn't always consensus - we remained divided on the merits of a primary system during both sober and not-so-sober debates. In the end, we were able to agree on a list of over 30 concrete proposals.

I've included a few of the recommendations below as a sample - if you're interested in reading the executive summary and all proposals, just drop me an e-mail:


Party & Caucus
• Create a mentorship program to develop leadership skills within the Party
• Develop an on-line national schedule of yearly events, anniversaries, etc and populate with events of national, provincial and local significance in collaboration with PTAs and EDAs
• MPs and Senators increase communication across the country as part of a comprehensive and consistent plan that can be aligned with micro-targeting data, Liberal List and critic responsibilities

Organization
• Establish quality templates for every aspect of campaigning - from fundraising scripts to campaign plans
• Outline rights/responsibilities of candidates and party officials - develop a training program to communicate them
• Green light candidates once they decide to stand as a candidate
• Consider holding all nominations in Q3 2014 with set membership submission deadlines

Policy
• Half the LPC priority resolutions passed at national Convention must be in the National Platform
• Include a section on each province/territory in campaign platform to put national themes in regional context
• Engage third-party stakeholders in the policy process and undertake appropriate follow-up
• Caucus critics should organize network events with stakeholders on selected policy issues across the country as part of their critic responsibilities

Administration & Fundraising
• Develop a culture of data collection at every level utilizing as many sources as possible
• Implement a comprehensive training regime for data managers and campaign managers
• Develop a fundraising vehicle to recognize contributions of $2200 (National/EDA) and consider raising Laurier Club contribution amount to $1500 within a combined contribution
• Leader and Caucus members should call Laurier Club and Victory Fund members
• Do not restrict party field workers to major urban centres

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3 Comments:

  • I like the idea of forcing the party to accept policies passed at convention. It would add some meaning to the process.

    By Anonymous Sean, at 2:06 PM  

  • Was sorry to have missed the conference itself, was glad to be part of the group that lead to these recommendations. Thanks for bringing some attention to them.

    By Blogger Quito, at 5:42 PM  

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