Thursday, December 05, 2013

#ReformAct Problem -- Caucus Initiating Leadership Reviews (#cdnpoli)

There's one part of the Reform Act that I'm really stumbling over. Specifically the notion that 15% of a party's caucus can initiate a caucus review of the party's leadership. If a majority of the members of a caucus agree then that the leader should be removed, the leader is removed and an immediate vote is held to name an interim leader so the party mechanism can be initiated to select a new leader.

Not all parties have the same mechanism to select a leader nor do all political parties leave leadership selection to members only - the Conservatives, and New Democrats have different models for choosing a leader which they both claim is better or fairer over the other, but all stipulate you must be a member. The Liberal Party does not require membership to vote on leadership.

As a participant in a leadership contest, I put a lot of effort into selecting a leader that, in my opinion, will represent the party on a national level. I review policy positions, review voting records, and review commitment to the party. While I may put in a lot of effort in my local riding (or nearby ridings), I don't put the same level of effort in all ridings to help pick and select candidates. An MP does not speak for me in regards to confidence in party leadership, by virtue of simply being an MP. Being an MP does not elevate your position to remove a leader above me.

As a party member, if I do not like the choice of leader, I'm free to continue to support the leader or leave the party. To approve of the party mechanism before selecting a leader, then to actively work against it post vote seems to be slightly disingenuous. That holds true for MPs. Simply by virtue of being an MP does not elevate your standing in determining who should or should not be leader other than guaranteeing you a spot at a leadership convention.

Members of Parliament, who feel they have the support of their riding, but no longer feel they can contribute meaningfully to their party in supporting the leader, are free to resign from their caucus and run again as an independent or seek the nomination from another party.

1 comment:

Robert said...

We have included your post in our 'Around the Blogs' section at