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Some thoughts on Ignatieff and the coalition.

One benefit to the Liberals endorsing Mr. Ignatieff as the interim leader (and for all intents and purposes rubber-stamping him as the permanent one in May) is we won’t have to read Andrew Coyne anymore trying to get John Manley to enter the Liberal Leadership race as a candidate.

Or will we? We might have to endure some more Coyne rants, if Iggy keeps on saying stuff like this:

3:02:51 PM
First coalition question award goes to Roger Smith, and the answer is – oh, like it could be as simple as yes or no. He’s prepared to vote against the budget, bring down the Conservatives, and govern the country as part of a coalition — but he’s not going to come out against a budget that he hasn’t even seen yet. That would be silly.

3:04:22 PM
Interesting – Roger Smith keeps terriering on the coalition question, but Ignatieff is fairly categorical — he doesn’t plan to revisit the terms of the agreement with the other parties, and he doesn’t want to deal in hypotheticals.

3:06:15 PM
Is the Liberal Party ready for an election in January? He doesn’t really answer that one, instead pointing out that it’s up to the Governor General to decide whether a coalition would be called upon to replace the current  government.

3:08:12 PM
This is kind of interesting – we the media don’t seem to know what to make of this. It’s going to be tough to spin this into another “coalition is dead” story, but I bet we’ll manage to do it somehow. We’re professionals.

Expect hysterics from the media tomorrow because Ignatieff wouldn’t say “the coalition is dead”, which is what they’ve been all presuming since it was clear he was going to be picked as Liberal leader. I’m not sure why they really want him to say that; Ignatieff has no reason to disown a coalition 7 weeks before a vote when it’s been the only thing that’s gotten Harper to do any sort of compromising, and he did that compromising to stave off defeat.

Even if Ignatieff scuttles this coalition idea (and I hope he doesn’t, short of some massive turnaround on stimulus that Harper and Flaherty do), he’s not going to do it prematurely and allow Harper to give up less concessions then he might otherwise on the Budget, if he thinks that threat has been removed.

8 comments to Some thoughts on Ignatieff and the coalition.

  • crf

    I think without a new agreement (like the coalition agreement of Dion and Layton), the GG would be unlikely to allow the Liberals to try to form a government.

    Ignatieff supporting Stephen Harper after Conservative members have called the Liberals traitors is just not happening. Harper is the most idiotically partisan leader I’ve ever seen (I’m only thirty-three though). But I live in B.C..

    Unless Harper resigns, which is what Ignatieff should ask for first, it looks like an election to me. Ignatieff shouldn’t be afraid of the media. It is the media, not Harper, that waged the most important war on the carbon tax and Dion. In hindsight, policy vagueness, running on a strong Liberal record and attacking Harper would have been a better strategy. Focus on Harper and attack him at every turn. There are lots of soft conservative targets.

    Ignatieff should focus on four things:

    * Harper has brought Canada back into deficit by spending a huge surplus on nothing while economic times were good.

    * Harper panicked by proroguing government, and when he insulted the majority of Quebec’s MPs as second class parliamentarians, he showed he was willing to roll the dice on Quebec separating in order to retain power.

    * Harper has turned his back on the world with his scientifically illiterate and un-Canadian position on climate change. He has appointed as minister of state for science and technology a fake doctor (a chiropractor: a profession grounded in anti-scientific dogma).

    * This chiropractor’s, Gary Goodyear, only contribution to government has been to run committee interference to avoid investigating Harper’s illegal in-and-out financing scheme. Harper has done everything to avoid accountability on this issue. Iggy should focus on Harper’s lack of accountability and openness. Iggy needs to make it clear that Harper has backed away from his promises in order to hide his government’s incompetence.

  • So if its ok for Iggy to rip up the coalition agreement and support the budget, will it be ok, if the Liberals do take power, for the Bloc and NDP to decide, vote by vote, if they support the Liberals?

  • wilson

    ‘Keep him guessing.’

    Is it Harper or the Dipper/Bloc partners Iggy is keeping guessing?

    Every time Iggy says he’s hanging onto the coalition,
    he trenches deeper into Canadians minds that he would share cabinet with Dippers and give the Bloc a veto on his budget.
    Canadians are not too keen on that arrangement.
    Iggy may over play his hand.

  • Harper knows the coalition would be an immediate success for the coalition, followed by dreary pain inflicted by the relentless Conservative spin machine.

    I think he won’t back down and will dare the coalition to step in. More divide and conquer, same ‘ol, same ‘ol.

    If the budget passes he can still blame future failure on what was added – more left-wing spending (in their spin).

  • Well done Libs.
    The possibility of true greatness returns to Ottawa.
    And will the idiots out in the boonies stop griping? Gift horse and all that.

  • slg

    You think it’s smart to show your hand to Harper via the media?

    Keep him guessing.

  • roll tide

    Harper will provide the stimulus, that was planned all along, Liberals will take credit for “forcing him”. Conservatives will take credit for saving Canada from a coalition that includes separatists. All this after the Crimson Tide beats Utah in the Sugar Bowl. Roll Tide.

  • I guess if the coalition never does happen, and if Harper comes through with stimulus and everything else the coalition wanted, then it would have accomplished its purpose.

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