Thursday, July 06, 2017

On graceful exits

Last time fund-raising numbers were released from the federal NDP's leadership campaign, I noted the possible significance of Peter Julian's relative lack of donations. And the problem looked to be a double whammy for Julian: while any candidate would have reason for concern in not being able to fund a campaign as intended, it was especially problematic for a candidate whose brand included organizational superiority.

Today, Julian cited fund-raising as the main issue in departing from the race - presumably meaning he'd run through another quarter of disappointment.

And the race will be weaker for his leaving on a couple of fronts. First, Julian made important contributions to the issues within the campaign, notably by ensuring that all candidates thought through and clarified their positions on pipeline issues.

And second, Julian was the lone candidate with a substantial connection to British Columbia. That means the other candidates will have new opportunities to seek first-choice support in a province with a large number of members. But it also creates a risk that less people will be motivated to participate at all - and it's possible that other candidates who might have seen Julian's supporters as a source of down-ballot support will be worse off for his leaving the race.

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