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Recent historical precedent of the day


 

Do you suppose the Democrats would’ve ultimately regretted forgoing the primary process and just going with the candidate who appeared “inevitable” at the outset? 

The Liberal Party of Canada may have few options under the present circumstances, but it is probably not gratuitous to point out that they will probably come to feel at least somewhat badly about whichever they choose. Not that that hasn’t been something of a party motto for the last couple decades.

No pressure, Mr. Ignatieff.


 

Recent historical precedent of the day

  1. Well somebody needs to do something. Watching the Liberal Party of late is like watching sugar melt in a hot pot. I for one am happy to see Ignatieff make his move. At this point the the rules mean very little if very soon there will be no Party.

  2. Bang on.

    I fail to see why the Liberals do not follow their original plan of rebuild their policy arsenal, replenish their treasury and repair their internal ties.

    That was their original strategy before they let Prince Andrei Dion lead them to a another glorius defeat. Best option for the Liberals to restore their credibility, choose a leader properly and take the time to organize yourself.

    Short term gain for long term pain, to twist a phrase.

  3. Poor Bob, He say 50%+1 of MPs on any given day trumps every other notion of legitimacy, mandate, and honour and Iggy shows him just what that means.

  4. You are confused Micheal. But that’s okay, I forgive you.

  5. The Democrats were not in danger of having to fight an unplanned election prior to November. As such, the comparison is not all that useful. Agreed that the Liberals need to involve the grassroots, and to ensure the next leader is widely perceived as legitimate. But it’s hopelssly simplistic to compare their context to the primary process, in a presidential system with fixed election dates,

  6. Well, Shawn, can’t an election be avoided if a few Liberals get the flu January 26th? Dion has no credibility left anyways–let him stay on as leader and take the hit for being weak on that front. And then actually get about rebuilding the party. Never mind the comparison with the Dems. Think of your own precedent–when contenders beat a hasty retreat ahead of the candidate of inevitability, you end up with Paul “We’ll discuss ideas after the election” Martin. Not exactly something to strive for.

  7. Who wants an interim leader that would follow the caucus that followed Dion and Rae into this mess? Apparently Iggy is taking any chances on that.

  8. It’s obvious people across Canada are against the Coalition because it doesn’t seem democratic even though their play for power last week might have been technically allowed.

    The only reason Iggy is where he is today is because he has influential friends within the party and now they propose to have coronation without Iggy ever holding Cabinet post, never won a leadership contest, never presented a platform.

    Party grandees anointing someone leader without consulting their base will do wonders to help dispel perception that Libs are un-democratic and only care about power.

  9. “It’s obvious people across Canada are against the Coalition because it doesn’t seem democratic even though their play for power last week might have been technically allowed.”

    The operative word is “seem”. There is no “technically”. It is allowed under our system. Period.

  10. Greg

    If it is so black and white, why is there not one example of a Coalition like this in the history of any country that has Westminster style of Parliament? The Coalition is not breaking any written rules but convention/precedent, which is mostly unwritten, has established that oppo MPs don’t try and pull this kind of stunt. And if the Coalition had followed precedent, than they wouldn’t be in the mess they are in now.

  11. “Do you suppose the Democrats would’ve ultimately regretted forgoing the primary process and just going with the candidate who appeared “inevitable” at the outset?”

    Aren’t they currently contemplating that very thing to fill a Senate seat?

  12. Rae IS the person arguing that the defeat of the Harper government has to occur in January and not next November. It would be like Obama arguing that if the opportunity to defeat Bush were available last November (in 2007). In November 2007, the Democrats would have chosen Hillary.

  13. jwl: What about the King-Byng affair? Not exactly identical, but certainly analogous.

  14. jwl:

    Actually, Australia, Ireland, and New Zealand are fairly used to coalition governments outside wars crisis situations (though Australis uses IRV instead of FPTP for voting, and I don’t know if NZ or Ireland does the same). People who aren’t seeing precedent are really just not looking for it.

  15. Appointing Iggy as interim leader is just caucus’s way of ensuring Rae needs the coalition to fail.

  16. Dallan

    We have coalition governments here as well. I am arguing that Coalition conceived, and attempting takeover, like we have experienced here in the past week is unprecedented.

  17. jwl:

    Okay, I misread you, but I have another example. What’s the difference between this and, say, Peterson/Rae in Ontario in 1985? The PC minority government failed a confidence motion moved by Rae a couple of months after the election, the premier resigned and was replaced by a Liberal/NDP coalition accord that had been in negotiation since the election.

    That time, the NDP didn’t get any cabinet seats – is that the difference for you between legitimate move and stunt?

  18. “It’s obvious people across Canada are against the Coalition because it doesn’t seem democratic even though their play for power last week might have been technically allowed.”

    There’s some ambiguity here, jwl. Is it obvious that people across Canada are against the Coalition, or that the Coalition doesn’t seem democratic?
    Most likely, the problem would be that neither option is particularly obvious.

  19. Dallan

    I would argue that Ontario was different because Libs were on upswing of popular support, Lib and NDP together had more seats than Cons and the accord was fairly specific on policy.

    Today’s Coalition has 30 less seats, no agreement on policies/situations they would be expected to deal with over the course of 18 months except they are going to spend billions, and Dion was about to become PM after being soundly thrashed in the election and having quit the leadership already. Dion didn’t have the confidence of his party while claiming the confidence of the House.

    cwe

    They are against the Coalition because it’s un-democratic and was going to bring separatists into power. And I agree about ‘obvious’, I just like to spice up my comments sometimes when I am feeling argumentative.

  20. Today’s Coalition has 30 less seats = today’s coalition has 30 less seats than Government they intend to replace

  21. jwl, I guess the thing is, if you accept that political power rests with the government of Canada, and that the government of Canada is made up of every MP elected to Parliament by the Canadian electorate, then your much-despised “separatists” have already been brought into power. And quite legitimately, no less.
    So, uh, go ahead and rail against those darn “separatists” if that’s what you’re going to do, but please try and remember that they were elected by, and are themselves, “Canadians.”
    And, if it’s still your intention to gripe about stuff that it’s pointless to gripe about, could I ask a small favour? I’m not so thrilled about our current PM or his party, but there they are, all the same. Could you please curse the heavens, just once, for me?

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