Postmedia's Lee Berthiaume filed the obligatory Justin Trudeau and the Liberal leadership story yesterday, and I'm quoted. First, in defence of charisma:
"Charisma can be seen as superficial, but it is important," said Liberal blogger Jeff Jedras. "I'm looking for someone who can go into small groups in small towns across the country and win Liberals over one by one. And in that sense he's far more a natural politician than Stephane Dion or Michael Ignatieff were."
And secondly, on the need to marry that charisma with substance:
"I still want to have a conversation about policy," said blogger Jedras, before acknowledging: "It's one factor to be weighed amongst the others. But what he brings to the table obviously is a lot and that's weighed in."
That second thought came out a little more awkwardly than I'd have liked, but basically my point was while we shouldn't dismiss charisma as superficial and unimportant, it does need to be married with substance to be successful. Should Trudeau run he's going to have to prove the doubters of his alleged lack of substance wrong, and before deciding who to support I, for one, would want to know see his thinking on policy. But having the charisma tool in his toolbox, if you will, is a head-start few will have. Real success, though, will mean building on that. (Also, see my earlier blog, The case for Justin Trudeau and a two-election strategy)
Also, earlier this week Susan Delacourt of the Toronto Star referenced an earlier blog I wrote about the Conservative Party's anti-Bob Rae attack ads in a piece she wrote analysing his decision not to seek the permanent Liberal Party leadership:
One astute Liberal blogger, Jeff Jedras, saw the method in the Conservative attacks. The ads, Jedras wrote, were an attempt to fuel internal tension in the Liberal party — to get the party arguing over whether to respond or not. And on that score, the strategy worked: the Liberals, despite their vows to never again leave a leader undefended against attack ads, couldn’t agree on whether to invest precious resources in a formal reply. Why would the Liberals spend money to defend the record of a former political opponent in Ontario?Recommend this Post on Progressive Bloggers