06.02.2017 07:58 AM

It’s not a good week to be an Ontario Liberal. It hasn’t been a good week in a long time.

Let’s recap.

  1. The Ontario PCs raised $16 million last year, and the Ontario Liberals – the, you know, government – raised $6 million.  Ten million less.  The government.
  2. The most powerful mayor in Canada – a very, very popular guy who has helped the governing Liberals out of many tight spots – has all but declared war on them. And Ontario’s extremely ambitious Transport minister is Number One on John Tory’s hit list, now.  Not good.
  3. And, last night in the Sault, the Ontario Liberal Party came third in a crucial by-election – and the PCs, who haven’t held that seat since the 1981 election, crushed them with more than 40 per cent of the vote.

Screen Shot 2017-06-02 at 8.29.54 AM

That’s just the past week. Previous weeks have been just as crummy, if not more so.  The budgetary goodies, the Hydro rate cut and youth pharmacare haven’t really done what they were supposed to do.

Radical change is needed.  Three suggestions:

  1. Fire the Wizard.  The “chief strategist” is doing to the OLP what the Wizard and his pals did to the LPC ten years ago: killing it.  Get rid of that crew, now, and bring in people who know how to win.
  2. New blood, new ideas.  The OLP desperately needs both.  Caucus – and some excellent staff in the Premier’s Office and minister’s offices – say the same thing: the OLP brand is strong, but it needs excitement.  It needs new and better ideas.  It needs new blood, in the form of some impressive candidates and thinkers.
  3. Reflect.  I know Kathleen Wynne.  I’ve worked with Kathleen Wynne.  I admire Kathleen Wynne.  And I know that Kathleen Wynne will not let the Ontario Liberal Party go down to third place in 2018.  She will do the right thing.  If she is dragging down the party, she will make the selfless decision.

As of this month, the election is twelve months away.  That leaves enough time – barely – to make some big changes.

Let’s make them, now.



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    Anonymous says:

    Great point. But who is the Wizard – her team of strategists? Herle?

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    Gyor says:

    If Kathleen win was going to leave she’d have done it by now.

    It’s already too late.

    The smart move for Andrea Horwath would be to point to all the OLP scandals and say if you want to stop the PCs from winning, only the NDP can do that because the OLP is too scandal ridden to win.

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      Ronald O'Dowd says:


      I don’t see how that can work. When the same leader runs to the right of the Liberals in 2014, it will come off as both phony and desperate if Horwath suddenly finds once again the good ole-fashioned NDP religion.

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    billg says:

    Just go already.
    The report the OLP had commissioned basically says this:

    “The Ontario Ministry of Finance report projects the new minimum wage hike will kill an estimated 80,000 to 155,000 jobs just among young workers aged 15 to 24, without even counting the number of jobs lost to older workers.”

    So, you commissioned a report, it said bad idea, very bad idea, then, you go ahead because you need those young voters who don’t really understand the ramifications of what this will do to them, you need them to have any chance of winning the next election.
    Along with the sale of Hydro One, along with reducing Hydro rates now at an unbelievable price tag in 20 years, please, someone tell me how this group is different then the current group that runs the White House.
    Cynical and desperate, all at a cost that someone else has to pay later.

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      Matt says:

      Link to the report?

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    Ronald O'Dowd says:


    The trouble with suggestions is the more obvious they are, and the more common sense they contain, the more quickly they are disregarded by those prepared to do anything and everything to hold on to power.

    Even my own rose-coloured glasses are fading now.

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    Howard says:

    Surely she cannot step down just a year before the election. I’m thinking that would make things worse.

    I think her biggest mistake to date was stabbing John Tory in the back over road tolls. Probably won’t be enough to save them in the 905, but certainly lost them votes to the NDP in their 416 base.

    Also, the Liberals’ attempt to bully and harass the 19-year-old Conservative MP from Niagara was smarmy and nasty.

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      Robert Viera says:

      I can’t think of anything more smarmy than a 19-year-old who thinks he deserves to be an MPP, unless it’s a 39-year-old party leader, with not much more life experience than the 19-year-old, who thinks he deserves to run the province.

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        Howard says:

        We have this thing called democracy. I’m aware that illiberal progressives are often at odds with it.

        What are you proposing? To set a legal age limit on those who wish to run for office?

        Interesting that you think 39 is too young, but a 43 year-old trustafarian snow boarder with the IQ of a turnip probably didn’t bother you.

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    Eastern Rebellion says:

    It’s too late…she has committed her party to some hard left policies in an attempt to gain support from voters who would normally support the NDP. She will make the claim that in order to keep the PC’s out, Andrea Horvath’s voters must support her. The middle and progressive conservative vote (I don’t consider Patrick Brown a “Progressive Conservative”) has or will be deserting the current Liberal Queen’s Park regime. Her credibility is really at issue IMHO, and she will be challenged to repeat as Premier. I don’t think her ego will let her go. She wants to be the boss and will not leave willingly.

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    Kevin says:

    I hope that by “the selfless decision” you mean to step aside. A shame, but it needs doing and soon.

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    Matt says:

    Have a friend who works at QP.

    Says there are rumblings the Liberals may be planning a snap election call after Canada Day.

    You hear anything on that?

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      Warren says:

      Yeah, the Tories are spinning that.

      Why call an election in which you get massacred?

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        Matt says:

        That was my thought as well.

        What I was told, and my friend is by no means in a position of inside knowledge, she just hears the scuttlebutt. The claim is the Liberals are thinking with the recent promises going over like a lead balloon for the most part, they are worried it will only get worse for them and think if the wait another year until the fixed election date they will be reduced to third party status. Sault Ste. Marie has scared the shit out of them.

        Go now and they may be able to save the Official Opposition role.

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        Ronald O'Dowd says:


        That answers my question as to whether there is an out in your fixed election law.

        Personally, I would play for time, if Wynne isn’t going, and stretch the mandate to its maximum, as Trudeau did in 1979.

        But to win that requires they come up with the mother-of-all-rabbits. So far, Herle and Company aren’t even close to doing that.

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          Ronald O'Dowd says:


          To use my new verb: Wynne has got to Dix that election!

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        Miles Lunn says:

        That assumes things will get better by next election. One of the biggest dangers is if the housing bubble bursts before next year as no one knows when that will happen so that might be a reason. Harper went in 2008 when he did as he saw the great recession coming, despite denying it, and wanted to get the election over before the recession hit as he knew his party would take a hit. That being said I think the election will be on June 7th, 2018, but with the loss of Sault Ste. Marie, if poll numbers don’t rebound fast I suspect more MPPs will be pushing for Wynne to step down.

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    Matt says:

    Brown and the PC’s need to spend some of that $16.1 million they raised last year not only going after Wynne, but they need a bigger advertising strategy against the Liberal Party of Ontario itself, showing the party is the problem and will continue to be the problem no matter who the leader is.

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    P. Brenn says:

    I think there is some arrogance amongst her advisors and her…they think they can pull another rabbit out of the hat like they did against hudak…I think the cons may have learned from that and that whole fire every body stance…Liberals are tired ..Chiarelli, Sandals, Matthews, Navqi…smae old same old – I realize some may not run but need new faces…

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    expat says:

    I liked Wynne, but worry that power can change people or at least cloud their judgement.

    I worry we will get more huge spending sprees which even those temporarily benefiting will see through as Wynne clings to power. This is not Kathleen from even a year ago.

    …Then the whole ship goes down during the election.

    Hopefully the party makes a move somehow. Soon.

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