01.17.2012 01:10 AM

In today’s Sun: not dead yet

OTTAWA — Hey! The Liberal party isn’t dead!

If the vitality of a political party can be measured by bums in seats, then the former Natural Governing Party is the picture of rosy-cheeked health.

More than 3,300 Grits converged here for a policy convention this past weekend. That’s remarkable because policy conventions tend to be pretty dull affairs.

The Lib turnout was remarkable for another reason: The weather. Can you think of any other place you’d rather be than Ottawa — one of the coldest national capitals in the world — in the middle of January? Can you understand why thousands would risk life and limb to travel in the middle of a big winter storm to get there?

I sure couldn’t. About 1,500 delegates would have been a success. But more folks turned out than the governing Conservatives and the official opposition New Democrats got at their most-recent policy conflabs — combined. The Tories and Dippers present this weekend as observers looked shocked by that, and they should be.

Not bad for a party that many gave up for dead back in May 2011, when Michael Ignatieff led it to its worst election showing in history — a third-place rump in the House of Commons.

15 Comments


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    Jordan says:

    They may still die if no strong alternative to Rae comes forward for leader.


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    Carolyn says:

    Great weekend! I saw you around and wanted to say hi but succumbed to shyness…


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    dave says:

    I watched, off and on, a little of the policy debate and voting on CPAC. I saw a lot of people from Ontario at the microphones. I saw one person from North Van, and a couple of people from Quebec. Maybe I just watched at the wrong times, but I had the impression I was watching an Ontario event.


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      The Doctor says:

      Hey, have a look at a current electoral map of Canada — that’s sort of what the Liberal Party of Canada is these days — “an Ontario event.”


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        Inge says:

        There were 400 delegates from BC


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          dave says:

          Encouraging!
          Many from the prairies?


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          Philip says:

          Don’t go wrecking the Doctor’s favourite script with facts, Inge. He tends to get grumbly about that sort of thing.


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            The Doctor says:

            I was talking about the electoral map. In case you haven’t noticed, in BC the LPC has 0 MPs outside of the City of Vancouver. It has 0 MPs in Alberta. And so on.

            I agree it’s a good sign for the party that 400 delegates from BC showed up.

            I would be interested to know how many delegates there were from Alberta.

            Philip, it’s evident from you post that you know dick about my actual political views.


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    Michael Radan says:

    Are you telling us the Conservative party is rife with VDs?


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    Tiger says:

    In Toronto EDAs for the CPC (and the PCPO), these meetings tend to be acclamations. Haven’t had to give a real delegate speech yet, other than to introduce myself.

    Friend of mine on the board of one of the Liberal EDAs in Toronto was acclaimed, too, so it might be a Toronto thing — we’re an apathetic lot.


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      Philip says:

      Thanks for clearing that up Mr. Tulk. One CPC convention delegate is equal to seven normal people, due entirely to the concentrated awesomeness of The Conservative Party.

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