33

Peter Donolo comments (cautiously) on his return to Ottawa

Chretien’s former director of communications is now Ignatieff’s chief of staff


 

Peter Donolo, whose appointment as Michael Ignatieff’s chief of staff was announced last evening, emails the following comment on his new job:

“I’m very pleased to be joining the team.  The Liberal Party is an important and vital institution in our country, with an unequalled history and an exciting future.  Its leader, Michael Ignatieff, is an outstanding Canadian who I believe would make an excellent prime minister.  I am fortunate to be building on the work initiated by Ian Davey.  And I look forward to working with Mr. Ignatieff, the members of the Liberal caucus and Liberals across Canada in the coming months to help in the revitalization of the Liberal Party.”


 

Peter Donolo comments (cautiously) on his return to Ottawa

  1. Well, given that he's Iggy's third CoS in about five months, I don't expect he'll be putting his Toronto digs on the market anytime soon.

    • Anyone know if Jill Fairbrother is keeping her job ? She was COMPLETELY out of the loop on this thing. It was crazy. The thing leaked and CTV was commenting on it during Tom Clark's show and then by the end she had e-mailed them to say it wasn't happening. Then by the evening Michael Ignatieff was welcoming him on board.

      Talk about amateur hour.

      • According to Susan Delacourt, it was John Manly who leaked it, before Davey and Fairweather were told – now there's a nasty way of doing things Mr. Manley. What a jerk.

        • The fact that Manley is a jerk was made all to obvious by his little theatrical exercise that set up the justification for our continued presence in Afghanistan.

  2. I wonder if today's chiefs of staff have expectations of working for year in that job, or see it as a high flying, career zooming, exciting contract?

  3. Well, all those polls showing Iggy dropping in polls have finally had their desired result. The pollster himself has been brought in to turn around things.

    Now, if only the Toronto Maple Leafs could bring in Don Cherry to turn them around.

  4. Hmm. that's kind of porridge, isn't it?

  5. And congratulations to Macleans for running a several page story designed to set the stage for this staffing decision…what would political parties do without you guys?

  6. I am fortunate to be building on the work initiated by Ian Davey.

    Should read: I am fortunate to be cleaning up the mess initiated by Ian Davey.

    • Yeah. The son doesn't seem to have the father's touch.

    • Many cities are built on rubble, some are built on previous foundations. I dont think the statement, in and of itself is incorrect.. That being said, it is more landfill than headstart.

      • Indeed, the landscape is so barren that any new construction requires no more demolition first. So, it is a perfectly accurate statement that the new guy is "fortunate to be building on the work initiated by Ian Davey."

  7. By "revitalization", he better mean he's cracking the whip!!!

    • Agreed .Iggy needs a tough CoS and the liberals need to become disciplined and patient.

  8. Hmmmm….how many changes of CofS and communications people has Harper had? Uh, huh……

    • Agreed. Harper had many, One of the biggest moments for Mulroney was his shift from cronies to pro's. Of course that was a year after being in office, but he had the luxury of a huge majority.

      while that is true, the communications eff up that happened has to absolutely be the last one like that. It was another unforced error and it does make you wonder why it took so long to tell Davey and Fairbrother about their fates….there isnt usually that gap.

      I also wouldnt want to be Fairbrother, issuing a denial before she even checked with her apparent boss.

      The question really becomes, does this allow Iggy to be Iggy or will he just be run like a marionette.

      • That she issued the denial without knowing the facts is kinda the point isn't it? That's why she had to go.

        • Kind of justified her own firing on that one. But, to be fair to her, one might want to find out for sure if she did that or if there was more going on here.

          For example,
          was it standard policy for her to do this? And who set that policy her or the "leader"
          was iggy avoiding telling her? Speaks to his backbone and/or agreement in this (many a boss wont fire face to face)
          IS this being accepted or was it fought, and what does it say about the future of peace within the Liberal party
          How far will the changes go?

          From what I understand the new communications director will be from Quebec.

          • I think your points are valid. There still are a lot of questions about Ignatieff's style here.

            The fact that Ignatieff did not keep Davey and Fairbrother in the loop is as much of a black mark on him as anyone. As you point out, it wasn't necessarily Fairbrother's fault.

            I'm still waiting to see what happens to Warren K. I realize W and Donolo worked together in Chretien's office, but it seems to me that WK was behind many of the biggest pr disasters of the past year, althoough I can't prove it.

          • Well, it doesnt look great on MI, no matter what. The question becomes whether the source of the problems were more wihthin the staff or within the leader. Now the staff is being changed then there is now only one option left is there is failure again. After such a performace you dont get two swings, you get one….it is dangerous territory since MI has no well spring of support within the party and he just torched the group that was. If they werent feeling bad before they are now after they were humillated like that.

            As for your questions on WK. We will see. He and Donolo worked for the same leader, but not necessarily together. WK also worked with many others that he has indicated an animus for in the past, apparently they are being brought into the house now. Time will tell. I doubt there was much love between the warroom and the ex- CoS or Communications director, speculation but witness the Wayne Easter and Pink Book fiasco as circumstantial evidence. That just comes from not talking, plain and simple. The warroomappeared to be operating on its own agenda, is that because they werent being given direction ot because they were, and the warroom chose to ignore it.

      • Just read the Taber article…apparently Fairbrother and Davey are a couple, which I hadn't seen mentioned elsewhere. Might explain a lot.

        I guess sometimes it's good to have a gossip columnist's perspective on things.

        • "I guess sometimes it's good to have a gossip columnist's perspective on things."

          +1 >snicker<

          I was unaware of that as well. It is often problematic. Having worked in an office with a couple it makes life difficult. Unless they are the owners, in this case they aren't, then it hurst sthe org baecause everyone is on their best behaviour and it stangles info flow.

          In tells me he wants me to skydive naked at the CNE, So jill tell me what you think of Ian's latest idea?

  9. Mr. Donolo – and his boss – have nowhere to go but up!

    • The advantage of hitting bottom. Will there be a bounce. The flip side of the coin is that Harper has gone as far up as he can go and still no guarantee of a majority.

      • ''Harper has gone as far up as he can go and still no guarantee of a majority.''

        It's assumptions like that , that has the Lib numbers at historic lows…..during a recession!!!
        The Libs should be riding high, as PMSH suffers from the fallout of the worst recession since the Great Depression,
        and yet the reverse is happening.

        You think PMSHs numbers are going to fall, when his government has sailed Canada out of this recession?

        Doesn't matter how Donolo spins things,
        MI is still the #2 pick from the Liberal 'B' Team.

  10. Donolo's first piece of advice – whispered into Iffy's ear shhhh…. haavaad is beautiful this time of year … then a furtive look over his should and a quiet call to Jean's cell – the party wants you back boss!

    • Chretien led the LPC into the Coalition of Losers,
      first guess would be that Rae is his pick to unite the left.

    • sound about right. i've heard that donolo is an alcoholic, too, stay tuned for some interested videos on youtube from ottawa in the near future.

  11. Here's the translation after a once-through the politico-dictum de-fib-ralizer:

    I'm very pleased to be joining the team.
    HA! told ya that you couldn't do it without me!

    The Liberal Party is an important and vital institution in our country, with an unequalled history and an exciting future.
    THIS is how to butter up with rhetoric, you fools!

    Its leader, Michael Ignatieff, is an outstanding Canadian who I believe would make an excellent prime minister.
    Just visiting? DENY, DENY! Hold that message consistently and the media will follow. Or -at the very least- its the best message given the circumstances.

    I am fortunate to be building on the work initiated by Ian Davey.
    Amateurs, step aside!

    And I look forward to working with Mr. Ignatieff, the members of the Liberal caucus and Liberals across Canada in the coming months to help in the revitalization of the Liberal Party.
    Mike, shut up and start listening to someone who knows how to play the game!

  12. Chretien's strategy was to demonize the opposition, so expect to begin hearing much more about the infamous "hidden agenda". The Liberals will no doubt try to pin many more boogeymen on the Conservatives.

    Donolo's never been one to let the truth get in the way of a campaign strategy.

    • They wont be trying to pin anything on Harper and his thugs. All they have to do is to draw aside the curtain to reveal the hidden garbage which is the essence of the conservative party.

    • he's like any other politician who just doesn't care about the public anymore, but he's more dangerous because he wasn't elected. we can't get rid of him!

  13. God help us if donolo winds up advising the PM

Sign in to comment.