Saturday, 13 April 2013

Bob Rae - The best candidate?

Since I am about to write about the federal Liberal Party I must confess, that I am not a card carrying Liberal. For a couple of elections I had the priviledge of voting for Ed Broadbent in my Ottawa Centre riding. You see, I am an ABC voter.....Anyone But Conservatives.  I have always voted  Liberal or NDP, federally and provincially, depending on who is running and who has the best chance to win. I think Joyce Murray's ideas for the next federal election make a lot of practical sense.

Today is the last day for Bob Rae as interim leader of the Liberal party of Canada. I was profoundly disappointed when I learned that he would not be running for permanent leader. What an accomplished person he is...intelligent, well spoken and compassionate. It has not been an easy job, to manage the Liberals, after their catastrophic defeat, but he has done so with with his usual flair. His performance was so inspiring that he was selected as the Parliamentarian of the year by his peers in the House of Commons.

Many claim that he could never have won as leader of the Liberals...that his track record in Ontario would always haunt him. However there are many, including Steve Paikin of TVO's The Agenda, who think his social contract with its infamous Rae Days was really a good idea. When you look back at elections and political decisions you can't help but wonder..what would our country have been like if things had gone differently. Here in Ottawa, we lost a heartbreaker when a good man, an experienced city councillor named Alex Munter, lost to  businessman  Larry O'Brien. Ottawa would be in different shape today if we had the benefit of Munter's positive guidance. And what of folks like Stephen Lewis and his father might our country have benefitted from their leadership?

But it's Bob Rae I'm thinking about today. While listening to an interview with him on CBC radio last Saturday, I was left with the impression that he is truly a classy guy. If Justin Trudeau manages to defeat Stephen Harper we can only hope that he will surround himself with such cohorts as Bob Rae...he still has much to contribute to our country.

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