2/02/2006

Leader of the Liberal Party:
The Position No One Wants

I read this article at CTV and couldn't help but feel a sense of irony. Below is a partial reprint of the article, including a lot of things they could have said, but didn't.

Bill Graham says he won't be spending a long time in his new role as interim leader of the Liberal party.
In fact, he told us he can't ditch this job fast enough. He confessed to being saddled with the role because he wasn't on the ball due to an ill-times hangover. At a meeting that did not include Ms. Stronach, Mr. Martin had asked for volunteers to step forward and everyone but him took a step back.
Speaking this morning on CTV's Canada AM, Graham shrugged off suggestions that he might be keeping the position warm, in case Paul Martin decides to return amid a possible snap election.
A snap election that no one but the Conservatives can afford and the Liberals are sure to lose. No, there really is no chance at all for a snap election, but does it look good to admit it? "We're still holding on," said Graham. "We can still come back. After all, look at the Conservatives after Mulroney." His rant was drowned out by the sound of Jane Tabor flushing the toilet, and so no one actually caught the rest of what he said. It sounded a lot like "Blah blah blah."
"I just don't think that's a very likely thing to happen. I'm not there for two years," said Graham, outgoing defence minister. "This is a short period of time to enable the party to prepare for its new leader." Pierre Trudeau came back from the political dead after the defeat of Joe Clark's seven-month-old Progressive Conservative government in December 1979. The Liberals went on to win a majority. "I don't think anybody's thinking that history will repeat itself that way this time," Graham said.
Except for Paul Martin, that is. Word is, he's been practicing his Trudeau impressions in front of the mirror every night.
Martin announced Graham's appointment Wednesday, saying he will remain the formal head of the Liberals until his replacement is chosen at a party convention... Martin's decision to stay on as leader for the time being saves the Liberal party from having to scramble to find a suitable successor. The party likely needs more time after several key Liberals who were considered frontrunners for the job -- Brian Tobin, Frank McKenna and John Manley -- recently announced that they don't want it.
Indeed, no one seems to want the job just lately. One can't help but wonder why anyone ever wanted it before. Supposedly, there used to be a day when the leader of the Liberal Party was actually a respected member of society who looked out for the people of Canada, not just their friends. No one remembers when that was, we just know it used to be true.
Asked why so many promising candidates were so quick to pass on the race, Graham said it may have a lot to do with timing, and other priorities. "I think everybody has to seek the right balance in their personal, professional lives," Graham said.
Off camera, Graham admitted that no one who might actually be qualified for the position was suicidal enough to take it.
Graham said many people also asked him if he would consider running. "And I thought about it, and I thought, look if I were 10 years younger, I may have a look at it.
Graham also reminded us that he is not suicidal, nor does he have any great desire to die of any stress related illnesses. No one does. Well, except for
Belinda Stronach, outgoing human resources minister, told reporters she's still considering whether to make a bid for the leadership.
But, who really cares?

3 comments:

Les Mackenzie said...

I've already announced my intentions on running for Leader of the Liberal Party.

They need to move farther to the left.

Jasper said...

I'll have a go. I mean, I'm American, but what the hell...

Sean J. said...

Give it to Belinda, everyone else has.

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