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A bit of this is in the story itself, but here’s an extended version of Ken Dryden’s assessment.

I think the current situation is basically the same it was six months and probably pretty much the same as it was the last few years. The public has been saying to us for some time that we want to know what you’re about. we want to know how you see the country and what a Liberla government would do.

That’s what the public is waiting for and we haven’t given them that answer yet. The other day, when Michael gave his speech on the day of the non-confidence motion, I thought he laid out a really strong case for an absence of confidence in this government. What has to happen next is to lay out a strong case as to why the public should have confidence in us. I think that’s yet to be done…

I think in the last number of years we’ve been too tactical. What are those things that we believe in? What are those things that make us proud? What are those things that matter to Canadians?

I only saw this research paper after the story had been written, but the exit poll data and demographics therein—and the discussion of Liberal electoral fortunes this decade—are probably quite relevant.


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  1. Hmmm…. focusing on the tactics is their problem, yet they bring Kinsella into the circle for — policy advice? I'd say the assesment is pretty accurate, but I don't think the Libs will do anything about it.

  2. Wow! I find myself agreeing with Ken Dryden! That is a first. Dryden is absolutely correct when he says that Ignatieff's problem is an overemphasis on tactics. Leaning heavily on Kinsella is all part of this. KInsella's games may make Liberal partisans feel good, but they detract from the main goal of re-positioning the party.

  3. "are probably quite relevant."

    That's an understatement. From the research paper:

    "The Liberals were able to coast to victory in 2000 with the support of two key groups: visible minorities and Catholics. By 2008, the Liberals could no longer count on their loyalty. The visible minority vote dropped 14 points between 2000 and 2004 (see Figure 2).3 The main beneficiary was the NDP. The Liberals did not lose any further ground in 2006, but in 2008, they lost a massive 19 points. And now it was the Conservatives who benefited. In fact, minority voters were almost as likely to vote Conservative in 2008 as they were to vote Liberal. "

    "The Catholic vote tells a similar story (see Figure 3). Catholic support has dropped a massive 24 points since 2000. In 2006, Catholics were as likely to vote Conservative as Liberal. In 2008, they clearly actually preferred the Conservatives to the Liberals. Controlling for other social background characteristics reveals that the drop in Liberal support among Catholics is even more dramatic than the loss of visible minority votes."