A CanWest story this weekend says up to 12 current Liberal MPs have or will be announcing they won't be running in the next election. While the Con talking heads are already spinning, in fact this is a great opportunity to breath some young, progressive fresh air into the Liberal Party and make some of the renewal we've all been talking about happen.
Certainly a lot of the retiring MPs will be missed. I'd like to send a particular shout-out to Andy Scott, a great guy who was our “twin MP” in Vancouver Island North and was a regular visitor and great help to our riding association, even after his return to cabinet. As for some of the other retiring MPs, well, let's just say I was never a big Jean Lapierre fan, and I won't be mourning Paul Steckle's retirement.
Now, as I said, the Cons have already been trying to spin something here, but then again, what else would they do? Here's CPC spinner Tim Powers over at MacLean's:
However, you have to wonder why more Liberals are dropping off the ticket than joining it. In the last 48 hrs, three former cabinet ministers have said they don't think Team Liberal is such a dream boat and have started to swim to shore. What is it that Andy Scott, Jim Peterson and Joe McGuire haven't shared with the rest of us?Ably countered by our own CalgaryGrit:
First off, when MPs in their 60s announce they're not going to run again, it doesn't mean the ship is sinking - it means that they want to golf and play bridge, rather than spend every waking hour away from their families heckling each other in the House of Commons. I could just as easily ask what Ken Epp and John Williams haven't shared with the rest of us about the Conservative electoral chances in Edmonton?Heck, even Peter Stoffer is able to stop spinning and talk like a person, and he's in the NDP!:
Stoffer discounted suggestions a Liberal wave of desertions is about to start because Prime Minister Stephen Harper's momentum appears to be growing.Exactly. We have a very veteran caucus, and it's not surprising that a number of them are ready to move on. They're earned their retirement, and this is a great opportunity for party renewal.
He noted many of the Liberals have been in the Commons for years and said Dion is "probably looking for a younger Liberal party, a newer Liberal party."
As Sinestra notes, this opens up a number of very winnable ridings that could be used, not only to get more female candidates, but more actual female MPs. And male or female, young, energetic, bright and progressive new MPs.
A new and renewed Liberal team to take on a Harper team that, despite dumping taxpayer money off the back of a truck, has still failed to resonate with Canadians. No wonder Timmy is spinning hard. Recommend this Post on Progressive Bloggers