Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Nominations present and future...

Well, in meta-nomination news Jeffrey Simpson goes on an extended muse on the possibility of - several years down the road, mind you - Bernard Lord and Frank McKenna both taking their act to the federal stage. (Whether Canadians are ready for the low wage, race to the bottom economy that either would bring is a different question altogether...)

The interesting (though highly speculative)question is where these fine sons of Canada's most... well, most New Brunswicky province would run? Speculation in recent years was that Frank McKenna was draped like a vulture over Moncton-Riverview-Dieppe MP Claudette Bradshaw's shoulder, waiting for her to decide that she liked the colour red and wouldn't mind the sleepy life of a Senator. Well, to date, Bradshaw shows no sign of desiring assisted living, and seems happy in the Commons.

That leaves McKenna trying to clip the wings of that no-longer-so-young man in a hurry, Domenic LeBlanc, Liberal MP for Beausejour-Peticodiac - who is presently riding out the lean Martin years (at least for his relatively non-Martinized self) in a secure and undisclosed location.

The only other option would be for McKenna to wing his way across the province to the federal riding of Miramichi (part of which he represented provincially) and thereby end the political career of Liberal MP Charlie Hubbard. Of the three, waiting for Claudette would clearly be the most viable option - leaving aside all questions of timing, diplomatic commitments and the fact that the job of Liberal leader is presently occupied.

As for Lord, pickings are thinner and further afield. Lord is very much a son 0f Moncton, which would be an easy, but ultimately fruitless Conservative nomination to win. Though Lord would do far better than any other possible Conservative candidate, you still wouldn't want to bank your leader's future on it. What does that leave him? Fundy is a good Conservative seat not too far from Moncton, but it has a sharp young Conservative MP - Rob Moore. (And aren't all sharp young Conservative MPs named Rob Moore? Or something very similar, in any event...) Perhaps, a la Mulroney in Central Nova or Tommy Douglas in Nanaimo, Lord would be shipped off to some far flung part of the country to find his fortune.

But perhaps we're just getting a little ahead of ourselves. On to the straight gossip, rumour and invective.

Though our back still hurts when we hear this word (Tilsonburg), the Tilsonburg News reports that Villa Nova Ontario's gift to national politics, Bob Speller is trying to create some sort of groundswell for... himself, in his bid to return as Liberal MP for Haldimand-Norfolk. But that he's still playing coy, though not very. When asked why the good people of Haldimand-Norfolk opted for Conservative Diane Finlay and not Speller, their MP of 16 years, Speller graciously blamed NDP voters and Dalton McGuinty.

And just like The Who's endless series of final concerts, (never-ending, with an outcome already known) the Thunder Bay-Rainy River NDP is starting its great schlep across northwestern Ontario, where it will nominate 2004 candidate John Rafferty at three seperate nomination meetings. Democracy can be exhausting sometimes, can't it? That might be why local Conservatives have indefinitely postponed their nomination process. Or perhaps somebody's playing for some sort of advantage...?

Oh, and Timmins lawyer Robert Riopelle beat local councillor Yves Mallette and will be the Liberal candidate against Timmins-James Bay NDP MP (and rockstar) Charlie Angus. Really, he's a rockstar. Look it up.