Musings —09.03.2011 06:46 PM
One need only look south of the border to see how the once-proud Republican Party has been dragged down by Tea Party insurgents. Behind the scenes in Ontario, the PCs have been fighting a rearguard battle of their own with a rural rump known as the Ontario Landowners Association.
Its roughly 15,000 members have tied the Tories up in knots over the past decade with their libertarian crusade. Leery of the split between the old federal PCs and Reform Party, Ontario’s Tories tried to learn the lesson of reunification from Stephen Harper — by making peace with their fellow travellers on the fringe.
Now, without unity of purpose, the two sides are stuck in a miserable marriage of convenience for the sake of the kids. You can hear the plates smashing and the pots flying.
Eves lashed out “at those few individuals who decided that the Tea Party version of Ontario politics would be good in that particular riding.
“And I don’t happen to agree with that,” he told a radio audience last week.
He was referring to the Eastern Ontario seat long held by former Tory cabinet minister Norm Sterling, who was toppled in a bitterly-contested nomination battle by ex-Landowners chief Jack MacLaren.
“The treatment that Norm got from his own (PC) party was not very polite, was not fair, it was not loyal, it was not compassionate,” Eves told party loyalists last month.