Monday, May 30, 2005

Crossing the Floor

A lot of news recently on the fact that Belinda Stronach crossing the floor to join the Liberal Party. I won't rehash a lot of the arguments.

Was she ambitious? Likely. It seems apparent that Ms. Stronach did not have the same opportunities for "growth" in the Conservative Party as she potentially had with the Liberal Party.

Did she sell herself out? Maybe. We'll only know with the next election.

I'd like to express my view thusly, beginning with a quote from Belinda after Scott Brison crossed the floor to join the Liberals.
It's unfortunate that Scott Brison did not stay, did not roll up his sleeves if he didn't like something ... Don't run from it. Help shape the direction of the new party.
I guess my view on this is that, despite what we think our Member of Parliament is supposed to do, we don't vote for the individual, we often vote for the party. In this case, Belinda Stronach had no political experience and the riding was new. While I'm sure that a few of the votes she received were because she was popular, more than likely, the people of Newmarket-Aurora voted for Belinda as a Conservative and to sit as a member of the Loyal Opposition.

We may vote for a person after they've held the job for a term or two. We may vote for a local personality or politician who we believe would perform well in their new job.

In this case, I don't think Newmarket-Aurora did that. I think they rested their hopes on a Conservative (any Conservative) to deliver them from the scandal and alleged corruption of the ruling Liberals. Newmarket-Aurora wanted a change, and they thought they were voting for it.

Will she win the next election? Won't know till then. I kind of hope not.

What should she have done? Ultimately, the electorate do eventually have to trust their elected members to act on their behalf, but to show courage and leadership when they know something is fundamentally wrong. If this was the case (and I am by no means saying it is), she should have left the Conservative Party and sat as an independent. No cabinet post, no patronage appointment, no baggage.

If she felt strongly that she was a Liberal, she could have sought the party's nomination at the next election. Go to her constituents and represent them as a Liberal.

I just can't believe it, still.

1 comment:

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