Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Convention fees, endorsements, debates and nominations

  • I've blogged in the past about the ridiculously high cost of attending the Liberal leadership convention this fall, particularly the $995/adult delegate fees. The other parties don't charge near that much. Kyle Carruthers has created a petition at his blog, The Northern Liberal, along with a letter to Mike Eizenga and Steve McKinnon that puts the issue well. I hope you'll go sign it. UPDATE: CP has a story on the high delegate fees, and how it could hurt attendance in Montreal. The talk of a non-partisan delegate fundraising effort is encouraging. Here's another idea: LPC, lower the fees!

  • News out of B.C. that Stephane Dion has picked up Maurizio Bevilacqua's former BC campaign chair, provincial Liberal MLA Karn Manhas. The announcement was made at a successful fundraiser for the campaign in Surrey that attracted 350-400 people at $100/ticket. Also endorsing Dion last night was LPC(BC) president Jamie Elmhirst. For the record, I'm a bit uneasy about people responsible for organizing the delegate selection process supporting candidates. I strongly hope there is a separate structure of neutral people appointed in all PTAs to handle the delegate selection process.

  • Rob Edger was at Monday's Liberal leadership debate in Surrey, and filed a report. Apparently Dion and Hall-Findlay, to show their environmental commitment, took Skytrain to the event. In Surrey. Luckily they made it unscathed. Vancouverities, you know what I'm talking about.

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TDH Strategies said...

I commend you for acknowledging the potential for conflict between executive members being active in leadership campaigns. At least someone from BC within the Dion camp seems to understand how this might present problems (even if he currently lives half way across the country).

Anonymous said...

Executive members (yes, even presidents) have no say whatsoever in the roll-out of the delegate selection process. There is no opportunity for harm.

This is completely in the realm of returning officers, appointed many many months ago.

robedger said...

Funny line about the Skytrain. For the record, Surrey Central seemed a bit cleaner and safer than I remember it being even a couple of years ago.

Manley Man said...

Remember, that Liberal conventions have subsidies to youth and members traveliing from far away, and that also a large portion of food needed for the time is included. Also that our convention is either 2, or 3 days longer.

Also by party constitution conventions cannot generate a profit, so the money is being spent on us, the delegates at the convention.

It may seem like alot at first glance, but really we shouldn't push this. This only makes the party look old and staid while the NDP whom does not include any meals or refreshments as part of the cost as young and vigorous.

It is really a pay now or pay later proposition.

Also, everyone paying in advance to eat the same food is more egalitarian than sub-deviding the convention according to class of restaurants one can afford.

oscarlevantscravat said...

From the lower mainland the travel subsidy is $300 -- knocking the registration fee down to just under $700... While i'd be much happier to pay about $500, i think that it isn't totally out of line; however i do see where filling all 14 delegate positions is going to be a problem at this rate. There should be specific incrimental waivers for people on fixed/lower incomes that reduce the cost to about $300.
As for the Dion thing, I also saw another publiceyeonline posting -- usually quite accurate, as your link on another item so indicates -- that questioned the claim that dion's people weren't padding the attendance by giving away tickets. Certainly, other camps are talking that up, not that it makes it true. You did know he can't win in Quebec, don't you?

A BCer in Toronto said...

Jonathan, as I said earlier I try to be an equal opportunity defender of truth, justice and so on. As I said though, I hope there is a seperate mechanism in place.

Rob, that's good to hear. It has been a few years since I've been back to Vancity, and even when I did live there I didn't take the Skytrain past Metrotown, if I could help it. Hopefully it's getting better.

On conventions, I've debated the various points in the previously linked thread. All told, I still think it's too expensive, and changes need to be made. If for no other reason than the donation limit.

Oscar, on the Dion dinner, I did read anonymous commenters that said tickets were given away. I also read the campaign chair saying they weren't. Until anonymous internet commenters want to put their name behind their rumours, I'll write them off as supporters of other candidates peddling spin, and ignore them.