Friday, April 12, 2013

#mtlqc13 - Day 1 Review

Based on my posts leading up to the NDP's federal convention, it shouldn't come as much surprise that my main focus is on the substantive policy debates. And the first day saw some positive developments on that front.

Rather than sticking to the party's chosen list of topics for discussion, members intervened in the resolution panel on the economy to push resolutions on employment insurance (1-53-13) and pay equity (1-17-13) into the mix for approval in this afternoon's plenary session. And while those might not have come first among my own priorities on the economy, they certainly reflect both an injection of strong progressive values, and a demonstration that membership participation still has a substantive effect on the NDP's policy discussions.

The other noteworthy development on the day was Tom Mulcair's evening town hall. For all the talk of an attempt to bolster Mulcair's image by telling more of his personal story, that effort would have fallen flat if he hadn't lived up to the introduction in the subsequent question-and-answer session. But Mulcair reminded us that he's at his best offering well-thought-out responses to a wide range of questions - and it particularly helped for an NDP crowd that the questions themselves led to a more focused articulation of progressive values than Mulcair seems to default toward on his own.

Tomorrow will see plenty more plenary sessions along with a speech by Mulcair. But the first convention test for Mulcair and his party looks to be off to a good start.

1 comment:

  1. Greg,

    It was impressive just how clearly & substantively Mulcair spoke - without any visual aids.

    In the past, and on occasion, I have noticed that Mulcair was prone to "motor-mouthing" his way through deep & fact-heavy responses. This had the effect of obscuring his point & casting doubt on his character ("why is he talking so fast? he must have something to hide!").

    From what I have seen over the past year, this affliction seems to have been cured. It did not appear when he spoke to the crowd at the Saskatchewan NDP leadership vote. And it certainly did not appear during this taxing #MtlQc13 town-hall, where there are plenty of opportunities for gaffe's & stylistic errors.

    We don't know what the future holds - but we should be confident that we are offering Canadian's a meaningful, clean, & clear presentation of talent.

    Que Sera, Sera,
    Dan Tan