11.02.2012 11:51 AM

Ontario Liberal open thread

Stuff is starting to happen, so I thought I’d open it up to folks to comment. You’ll be hearing plenty about my views, believe me.

So comment away!


  1. North of the 407 says:

    I like Kathleen Wynne but she reminds me too much of someone else…


  2. J.W. says:

    Kennedy supporters can’t be serious. As Warren said there’s no place for losers in this. Can Kennedy beat the current High Park provincial member after losing federally to Peggy Nash? Terrible record in leadership races. Non starter. A bit of name recognition maybe but no record or substance.

    • MississaugaPeter says:

      Yah, a big loser.

      Have you gone before the public and won 4 elections?

      Remember David Miller? He lost to Gerard Kennedy in 1996 and became mayor of Toronto twice.

      Remember Jack Layton? He lost in 1997 and then became leader of the Official Opposition before losing his valiant fight against cancer.

      Gerard lost to Peggy Nash in 2011 because of a very successful smear campaign.

      • Cath says:

        Kennedy and Wynne cancel each other out, leaving Sandra P. looking very good by comparison.

      • Dan says:

        I think MississaugaPeter has a point.

        Past wins aren’t predictive of future wins. No one wins all the time.

        I think someone who kept their seat in the current McGuinty minority is in more trouble than someone who got out. Whether that person got out voluntarily, or was forced out by the ballot box, it doesn’t matter.

        • Warren says:

          Someone keeps their seat, they’re in trouble. Someone who is a serial loser, they’re a winner.

          Eurasia has always been at war with Oceania, etc.

          • MIssissaugaPeter says:

            I think there is a fine political operative who lost an election in 1997 to a Reformer, who found his way into the offices of the prime minister and the premier of Canada’s most populous province. He is a good dad and on a book tour.

            Gerard is 4-1 in elections before the people. And actually led on 4 of the 7 ballots that he participated in at leadership conventions

          • Warren says:

            Ha. Well done, Peter. Take a shot wrapped in an apparent complement.

            Listen: I’m not running for anything. Your friend apparently is.

            I, and many others, don’t like the way he’s done business over the years. It adds up.

            If he runs, as Radwanski wrote in a column that should be read (and re-read) by every Ontario Liberal, he will be beaten. Badly. It’ll be the end of the road, in fact.

            I say that straight out, unwrapped in apparent complements or anything else.

    • Tim Sullivan says:

      I’ve asked before, got no answer.

      What is the attraction to G Kennedy? Really, someone explain it.

  3. Derek Pearce says:

    Pupatello’s the way to go. Although this is unfair, because Wynne is supremely competent and compassionate, she’s tainted by being part of McGuinty’s cabinet for too long. Kennedy will go nowhere. Pupatello is a perfect foil for the Tories as well.

    • Chris says:

      I agree – any current cabinet members will be hammered at relentlessly..

    • Michael says:

      I am not so sure it’s the PCs you have to worry about. Hudak has been campaigning for a long time and the voters have just not warmed to him. And the “white” papers he has come out with since the last election want to take the province further right than even Mike Harris dare to go. He will get his 30 seats in rural Ontario, but that is about his ceiling.

      I would be more worried about Horwath. She hasn’t taken a position on anything, so she hasn’t pissed anyone off. Memories of the last NDP government have faded. The heads of the unions will support her. If voters really are in the mood for change they may just give the “nice” lady a shot.

  4. WDM says:

    Wynne will be a formidable candidate. Ultimately, the party will need to re-establish support that has been lost, at least according to the polls, to the NDP. Tim Hudak will lose votes all on his own, attack him on his positions by all means, but he doesn’t need the help in re-directing centrist voters back to the Liberals. Among Cabinet contenders I think Wynne is the best bet. Always liked her. She’s smart, capable, and will be a credible voice to centre-left voters considering the NDP. Ultimately, if she’s the winner, I likely vote Liberal. Can’t promise that’ll be the case with everyone (I’ll also add that as someone who likes John Tory, her Election victory speech in 2007 was incredibly classy).

  5. m5slib says:

    I’m a huge Kathleen Wynne fan, but I worry about her electability. Like it or not, Smitherman’s sexuality played a role in the Toronto mayoral election. I wonder how Kathleen’s would play out province wide. Still, she seems to be someone who can put in the required work. What also makes me second guess is that she’s “not a typical politician.” That might seem like a good thing, but it isn’t if it takes away the tactical edge that you need. I like Pupatello too, and she should bring or keep some good visibility in southwestern Ontario. She’s had some time away, so that should help her. She also seems to have easy appeal. My head says Sandra, but my heart says Kathleen. Tough decision, but the party is fortunate to have two great women vying for its leadership.

  6. m5slib says:

    Also Warren, notwithstanding your well reasonsed stance on women leaders right now, why not convince your old buddy Jim Watson to give it a kick?

    Simply put, he’s great.

  7. North of the 407 says:

    Just read about the trainwreck that is the Gerard Kennedy campaign. Jeesh! With two failed leadership bids already under his belt, you’d think GK would have learned his lesson by now.


    • MIssissaugaPeter says:

      NO train wreck.

      Emails accidentally sent to government emails. Some government folks ask for no political emails and others provide their own personal emails. When draftKennedy (not actual Kennedy) campaign realizes they should not have sent to government emails, they send an email requesting that the previous email be discarded.

      Simple mistake. Misunderstanding in translation. No trainwreck.

      Expect more volunteers for the event at http://www.liberalvision.ca tomorrow than any all the other draftCandidate campaigns put together!

  8. pedro says:

    I personally worry that the “Pupatello wasn’t part of the last cabinet and is therefore untarnished” argument is too thin. One could just as easily argue that, having been in cabinet for so long, Pupatello could see that the ship was going to sink (after all, save the cancelled power plants, the other problems – eHealth, ORNGE, green energy all pre-existed the last election). She was merely the first person to jump, and could be cast as having seen it coming. Thoughts?

  9. MKS from durham says:

    Can you be a little more specific about how you “don’t like how he does business”? He has always come across to me as a guy with a lot of integrity and charisma, and would not be tarnished by the recent McGuinty problems.
    I was a long-time Liberal who left the party due to Bill 115, and Kennedy is a candidate that could potentially draw me back. I would want to know what he would do to alleviate some of McGuinty’s biggest problems, particularly the hostilities created with the teachers and public sector workers.

  10. Tim Sullivan says:

    John English.

  11. Kevin says:

    Warren, how come you are so quiet about McGuinty and the gas plant controversy; probably the most outrageous waste of tax dollars even by his standards like eHealth and Ornge.

    • Warren says:

      All three parties favoured moving it. All said there’d be costs associated with it.

      The “controversy” happened in the middle of the election campaign. It was thoroughly debated and covered. Voters still voted Liberal.

      The people passed collective judgment. Their judgment matters more than yours or mine.

      I’ve said that on TV and elsewhere 100 times. Too bad for you that you missed it.

  12. MKS from durham says:

    @Tim Sullivan,

    “I’ve asked before, got no answer. What is the attraction to G Kennedy? Really, someone explain it.”

    Personally, I’m waiting for a valid reason not to like him.

    – Successful government experience (scandal-free!) that showed he could think outside the box and bring in loyal groups of people (e.g. teachers) in as loyal supporters of the party (at least until McGuinty/Broten poisoned that relationship, this year

    – no public baggage/lack of tarnish from present government problems which will stick to all recent Government members, including Pupatello, and have the party heading for a third place finish.

    – first point + second point = best of both worlds

    – experience coming from the outside and putting together a credible campaign team/machine that was a major contender in two previous leadership races -lots still say the party made a mistake in not choosing him and now they have a third chance to get it right

    – the hard to define/intangable quality of charisma – not quite Justin Trudeau calibre, but similar – a quality again I don’t see in any of the current ministers, or Sandra P.

    I see him having the potential to draw back many Liberal supporters, like me that have abandoned the party in frustration in the last couple of years. The key word is potential!

    • Tim Sullivan says:

      I don’t see or feel the “hard to define/intangable quality”.

      I’ve not been impressed with him. He comes across arrogant. I’m unimpressed with his role behind getting Dion in as leader, he seemed to give a big F-U to the Ontario Liberals when he left for Ottawa. I guess I’m unimpressed with his having left Toronto for Ottawa and I seriously question his political skill. He lost 2 leaderships and his own seat, presented himself as leader at a very young age when he was not particularly accomplished, and appears non-committal to a party (provincial then federal and now provincial? again).

      I don’t wish him ill, but I’m also not impressed with food banks. Maybe I don’t understand how they are run, but having one set up, is there any reason to believe it would close when the necessary-for-life product is given for free?

      As one husband* told a lawyer about his wife and his reason for wanting to separate: “She just bugs me”.

      *I believe I read this story in an article somewhere, a long time ago — not my story, I forget the source (with my apologies to Margaret Wente for not following her lead and just claiming shit as my own).

      • MKS from durham says:

        ‘presented himself as leader at a very young age when he was not particularly accomplished,’

        I seem to remember a large ground swell of support,back in 96, pushing him to run, just as there is for JT federally, now. Kennedy was immensly popular in my area in 1996 and I hear excitement about the possibility of him running again. I don’t hear much excitement for any sitting cabinet ministers/caucus members. Is it really arrogance when tons of people are twisting your arm to run. Having said that, I want to hear how he will resolve the feud with the ed sector employees/public sector employees.

  13. Isaac says:

    Dalton McGuinty = Pro Rogue

    Next election: Spring ’13

    Next government: Majority Conservative or NDP

    Next Liberal leader: Dead meat

  14. MKS from durham says:

    ‘he seemed to give a big F-U to the Ontario Liberals when he left for Ottawa.’
    Seeing as how many Ontario voters feel like the McGuinty government have given them a big F-U since the last election (myself included!), this could be a big positive for Kennedy!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.