Musings —04.26.2010 06:27 AM—
KINSELLA: What has been interesting, to me, in the Rahim-Helena mess hasn’t been the ill-fated couple, per se. It’s been how the Harper Reformatory government has dealt with the whole mess.
Early on, for example, I opined online about Guergis’s now-infamous tantrum at Charlottetown’s airport. On my Facebook page, one of the first folks to comment about my comment was none other than Kory Teneycke—until recently, Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s powerful director of communications, and now one of the most adept Conservative pundits in Canada. Teneycke let it be known that he was no fan of Guergis or her behaviour—and, later on, even seemed to suggest she deserved to be Tasered for her misdeeds.
That evening, I did CTV’s Power Play show with Canada’s only other highly-adept Conservative pundit guys, Tim Powers. Powers, too, mused that Guergis needed to reflect on what she had done. He didn’t sound impressed.
Nobody pays any attention to me, and for good reason, but I told CTV’s Tom Clark that I was amazed by Teneycke’s and Powers’s public utterances, and that it could only mean that the all-seeing PMO was about to cut her adrift.
There’s no way—no way—either of those two guys would ever say something that didn’t meet with the approval of the PM. “Helena, start packing your bags,” I advised. “You’re done.”
Precisely no one, then, should have been surprised to see Guergis and her unlucky husband kicked to the curb by Reform-Conservative officialdom mere days later. It was always going to happen. The only question was when, not if.
That is what intrigues me about all of this sad tale. I don’t see it in any way harmful to the Conservatives’ long-term prospects. For Team Angry, it did two useful things: one, it allowed them to separate themselves from two too-urban, too-hip people whom many in government had come to dislike. Two, it allowed them to look proactive and tough on crime. (Memo to Liberals: when a brown envelope is handed to you, in the future, take it.)
At the end of this drama, I feel sort of sorry for Guergis and Jaffer. The moment Teneycke and Powers started expressing their disapproval, it was all over but for the proverbial fat lady singing. And I don’t get the impression that Mr. Harper dislikes the sound of her voice.