Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Pauvre Steffi

Yesterday's Quebec byelection results were quite entertaining, in spite of having to endure the the translations at CPAC.

However, while watching Stephane Dion's speech in Outremont, I almost felt a measure of compassion and admiration for his graceful acceptance of the historical defeat.

Liblogs are replete with head-smacking introspection this morning and many are questioning Stephane Dion's leadership.

Others see it more as a Bloc meltdown.

Personally, I think the Liberal party should rally behind Dion, and give him another chance.

Why, you ask?

Well, Greg Weston supplies the answer here - No Need to Panic. A byelection is often more of a focus on local candidates than a test of leadership.

You can't buy that argument? This is not consistent with Joanne's wildly partisan, tin-foil helmeted, Tory-entrenched, blinder-encrusted bias?

Well check out the last line in Weston's column. That is probably closer to the truth.

* * * *

Update: Check out Paul Wells, H/T Warren Kinsella.


bluetech said...

Gotta wonder...who is Weston addressing with that "No need to panic" title...the media? Dion?maybe Dions faithful?
The remainder of his coloumn pretty well describes the end for Dion, but purely in analytical tones.
And no reference to victory for Harper with the highest number of votes going CPC.
Analyse that Weston!

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Weston's a disgruntled member of the PPG. They have a vendetta against Harper.

bluetech said...

CTV also. The whole message is DION.
Even their survey..."Who's the biggest loser in this by-election, Bloc or Libs".
How about biggest winner...CPC!

Calgary Junkie said...

Well let's see how Harper milks this. I predict he's going to become even less available to the media before the throne speech. This will push the media even more to report on the conflict within the Liberal camp.

And of course, being the consumate poker player, Harper doesn't want to tip his hand to Dion as to what will be in the throne speech. I think Harper is going to strike a deal with Duceppe, giving him a transfer of tax credits to the provinces, in return for some Senate, justice, and Wheat Board legislation.

Lapierre was saying that Harper doesn't have much of an organization on the ground in Quebec. So maybe Harper needs to buy some time, maybe do more recruiting of higher profile candidates.

Plus, there's some mutual respect between Harper and Duceppe. Remember how Harper personally reassured Duceppe that there would be no snap election while Duceppe ran for BLOC leader ? We all want to see some hardball played by Harper, but I'm sure he still wants to pad his list of accomplishments before going to the voters.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

C.J. - Very shrewd analysis.

bluetech said...

Well...without "much of an organization on the ground in Quebec" I'd 36% of the vote is pretty good.
Just think what will happen when the CPC does have the organization on the ground!

Calgary Junkie said...

Let's not overlook Duceppe's big, big, BIG advantage in a general election. He only has to campaign in ONE province. Harper has to campaign across the whole country.

Thus Duceppe can rent a few buses, and just keep driving around and around to the same ridings, focusing his resources to maximum advantage. Harper needs a strong ground game to overcome that.

Anonymous said...

TangoJulietted sez:

Monty Python's Black Knight, wasn't it? Lost first one arm, then a leg, then another arm and then his last appendage? But wasn't he still willing to take on all opponents?

"C'mon...I'll chew at your ankles..." he challenged.

Steff in his "victory speech" last night, reminded me very much of this skit.

Good old Sir Steffi -- cut off at the knees, stumps where his frail arms once flailed, his head being politely handed to him on a platter, and his two main comments?

"...obviously the voters of Outremont soundly rejected Mister Harpers Government..."

and -- from our "What We Have Here Is A Failure To Communicate" Department:

"...we did not communicate our message as well as the NDP..."

Quite obviously, Sir Ass-hat and the rest of his glum-looking stooges on stage behind him, all trying to avoid the limelight [and where the hell was that giant-killer Bobbie Rae, eh?]still just don't quite get this anger harboured by the TAX-PAYERS. Nor do the arrogant Liberals fathom the degree of raging hatred most voters have for them.

They all looked like a bunch of crooked elves at midnight, caught in the headlights of the onrushing eighteen-wheeler.


As of mid-September, 2007, here is ABSOLUTELY NO WAY WHATSOEVER that this gang of piking lickspittles can effectively "communicate" that definitive message that might bring them that much longed-for collective measure of absolution frome Canda's tax-paying citizens.

I AM truly, and indeed, loving this morning.

Looks like there is a God after all! And it looks like She is finally going to deliver this great nation from the greedy and grasping hands of them grinchly and grifting grits. Yippee!!



Anonymous said...

I do have to give Dion credit - he's taking it like a man - after some excuses he has stated that he takes full responsibility for the loss.

Not like our Harper who disappeared and pouted and felt sorry for himself and kept everyone guessing (when he lost to Martin).

Now - if nothing else, Dion has class.

Anonymous said...

tj, not that I have any warm feelings for Bob Rae, but he is currently recuperating from his heart surgery a couple of weeks ago and will be out of things for a few months longer.

Anonymous said...

TangoJuliette sez:

Anon:Tue Sep 18, 02:12:00 PM EDT

Thanks for the heads up on the Bob Raoe Cardiac deal. Was not aware. My cardiologist has kept me away from media things as well. But I'm back.

Would have been a tough gig for Bob to show at Outremont, what with Muclair, a former Que-Libcrossing to Fed-NDP and Bob having gone from Ont NDP to Fed Lib.

well, if modern Ont healthcare is any indication, Rae should be around for a long time. Hope his surgeon was half as good as mine. My guy is in London -- has been batlling cancer for a few years, but still does awesome cardio "rebuilds." Wizard.

Best I get back to trying to red the dailies again.



Paul MacPhail said...

Hmmn. I missed the Dion speech. It does sound rather absurd though to claim that the voters didn't vote for his team because they didn't like his opponent's team. CJ, very observant. Joanne, those tin-foil helmets are rather annoying, aren't they? I took mine off for the Summer too. I'd have to agree with you that Dion should be given a chance. If he's not given the time to succeed, then it's not really his failure, it's the Liberal Party's failure.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

I'd have to agree with you that Dion should be given a chance.

Absolutely. And he assumed responsibility for the losses himself, just like a real leader.

Yes, the LPC should give Dion all the time he needs to prove himself.

Möbius said...

Joanne says,

"Absolutely. And he assumed responsibility for the losses himself, just like a real leader."

He actually seemed to be implying that the loss was a backlash against the CPC government, and Afghanistan, i.e., the NDP vote was against the Cons and not the Libs. Darn those voters in Lac St. Jean for not sticking with the script!

Crabgräss said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Crabgräss said...

The by-elections are much more a measure of the local candidates than of the parties. I remember when Cheri DiNovo was up against Sylvia Watson in the Parkdale-High Park by-election (necessitated by Gerard Kennedy's vacating the post for his Liberal leadership bid). I learned everything about those two (without trying), and heard nothing about Dalton McGuinty or Howard Hampton (or John Tory of course). It was very obviously about the local candidates. During the provincial election campaign, it's all about McGuinty and his political adversaries.

The same thing is true at the federal level. For the most part, in by-elections, people hear all about and vote for their favourite riding candidate; in a general election they vote for the party.

So while it is disappointing to Liberals that they lost Outremont, it should be kept in perspective.

It would be interesting to know what conclusions if any Steffie Harper is drawing from this.

Möbius said...

He's probably drawing the obvious conclusions. He can probably write a decent throne speech without fear of an election being forced.

I agree that by-elections can be won on local issues, but to some extent, they can also be a referendum on the leader. The fact that the Libs lost support in a couple of ridings should be of concern. Nice to see the BQ lose support as well.

I think the Lib personal attacks in Parkdale likely generated more support for DiNovo. They were a bit overblown.

Unless the Lib party is suicidal, Dion must be allowed to contest the next election. After that, all gloves will be off.

Crabgräss said...

Agreed on all points, Möbius. Love your umlaut, by the way.

Möbius said...

Ok, so I stole it from you!

Danke schön, und aufwiedersehn!