Saturday, October 31, 2015

On decision points

I've previously challenged any attempt to pressure Thomas Mulcair to abandon the NDP's leadership. And I'll take a moment do so the same in response to Scott Gilmore's admonition to Elizabeth May.

As in the case of every party, the Greens should have every reason to evaluate whether they're achieving their goals. But there's no reason why getting rid of a current leader should be seen as either necessary or sufficient as a means of improving a party's standing.

And as the Greens decide what to do, May's track record is one which offers plenty of fodder for discussion on either side.

My personal impression is that May and her party spend an inordinate amount of time lobbying other parties and the media for debate positions and other attention, rather than building the type of broader popular support which would make exclusion impossible. And there's reason for question about results as well as strategy given the Greens' fading vote shares.

But the reality is that May is the only Green candidate to manage to get elected to Parliament (providing the party with resources it never would have had otherwise), and has done important work while she's been there. And more importantly, the upcoming Parliament offers her first chance to try to advocate for issues like environmental action and proportional representation before a government which isn't actively hostile to them.

In sum, there's a strong case to be made that May deserves the opportunity to show what she can do in a political climate which isn't defined by Stephen Harper. And it should be for her and her party to decide whether she's achieving more than a potential replacement could - not for outsiders to try to push her away.

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