Saturday, January 14, 2012

Leadership 2012 Roundup

Yes, it's only been a couple of days since my last roundup post. But I'll let the pace of news determine how often I put them up - and the end of this week offered loads of material for discussion.

- Niki Ashton made a statement on LGBT equality in the course of her latest prairie tour, and earned a positive review from Olav Rokne for her earlier Edmonton stop.

- Nathan Cullen pitched his electoral cooperation plan in Saskatoon while serving as a key voice in criticizing the Cons' attempt to force the Northern Gateway pipeline on the residents who'll have to suffer its consequences.

- Paul Dewar unveiled two huge endorsements-plus: Linda Duncan endorsed Dewar and signed on as his Energy and Environment Adviser, while Charlie Angus offered his endorsement and was named as Dewar's deputy leader charged with organizing to win the additional 70 seats to put the NDP in power. But while the endorsements put two well-respected MPs in Dewar's camp, I'm not sure the choice of roles for Angus will be much of a plus for Dewar's leadership prospects: to the extent members are concerned about his ability to connect with francophone Quebec, the declaration that another anglophone Ontario MP will be his second in command will keep him from reserving that role for somebody who can address the perceived weakness.

- Thomas Mulcair was endorsed by Carl Pursey, president of the Prince Edward Island Federation of Labour - which may not swing a lot of votes on its own, but signals that Mulcair may be ahead of the rest of the contenders in moving into the Atlantic territory vacated by Robert Chisholm.

- Peggy Nash released an innovation plan which earned a positive review from Paul Wells, and also unveiled the endorsement of Ontario NDP stalwart Peter Kormos.

- Brian Topp released a policy paper on jobs (focused on small and medium-sized businesses), while picking up another Saskatchewan NDP endorsement from former deputy premier Clay Serby.

- And on the commentary side, plenty of media doomsayers offered their firm prediction that seven out of the eight leadership candidates would have no hope of holding onto the NDP's breakthrough seats in Quebec; sadly, the list of pundits making that claim wasn't cross-referenced against a list of those who once admonished that the NDP's Quebec breakthrough was impossible in the first place. Gloria Galloway rounded up the leadership candidates' plans to win government in 2015. And Cathy Dobson covered a well-attended Sarnia forum featuring Nash and Romeo Saganash.

[Edit: added introduction.]

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