Sunday, September 10, 2006

Planting seeds

You wouldn't know it from the CP's coverage, but Layton's keynote address from the NDP policy convention included plenty of material for discussion beyond Afghanistan - including what amounts to a dare to the Libs to choose Stephane Dion as their leader:
And then there's a son of this city -- Stephane Dion.

A man with whom I have fundamental disagreements about how Canada should build and renew itself.

But also a man who is, if I may say so across the partisan divide, distinct from his principal opponents in being a committed Canadian and a man of principle and conviction.

And therefore almost certain not to be elected leader of the Liberal party.
It'll be interesting to see how (or whether) the Libs respond. Presumably Dion won't want to echo Layton's words based on their being a bit too aggressive toward the other frontrunners. But it seems entirely possible that Layton's statement could get wielded against Dion by another candidate seeking to portray Dion as too far left to win the leadership. And if that type of strategy succeeds (whether or not making reference to Layton in particular), the NDP should be nicely positioned to pick up votes of Quebeckers whose current preference might be a Dion-led Lib party.

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