Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Amateur Hour?

This is just amazing, if accurate:
Liberal Leader Stephane Dion has lost his Quebec lieutenant and is having trouble finding a replacement.

Hull MP Marcel Proulx confirms that he resigned over the weekend as Dion's right-hand man in the province. While Proulx says he's a team player and has no problem with being replaced, sources say he quit after learning that Dion had offered the post to Montreal MP Denis Coderre.

However, Coderre declined and Dion was left scrambling to find a new lieutenant.

Dion is trying to persuade a reluctant Pablo Rodriguez, another Montreal MP, to take the post.

I'm not sure what to say.

51 comments:

Gayle said...

How about you reserve comment until this rumour is confirmed?

No point speculating on speculation.

Steve V said...

gayle

You'll notice the lack of commentary :)

Jason Bo Green said...

Aw man, this would sure leave me scratching my head... again.

I have to say, you've got me curious.

Steve V said...

This from CBC:

"Liberal MPs were in caucus all morning and an announcement was expected later in the day about Proulx's replacement, she said.

Two Montreal MPs, Denis Coderre and Pablo Rodriguez, were said to have been offered the job, with Coderre turning it down and Rodriguez's position unclear, she said."

The timing is unbelievable. Throne speech day, and we get embroiled in an "announcement".

lance said...

I wonder if this is a rebellion based on being told how to vote?

What would cause a mass defection of Quebec Liberals?


Course, I find it _hilarious_ that Pablo was offered the job . . . almost exactly a week after he was turfed for expressing doubt about Dion.

Cheers,
lance

Steve V said...

Globe and Mail:

"Hull MP Marcel Proulx has confirmed that he resigned over the weekend as the party's right-hand man in the province, after learning that his job had been offered to Montreal MP Denis Coderre."

Anonymous said...

Good riddance.

Glad to see DIon shaking things up in Quebec.

Dr. Tux said...

let's get some pro-Dion, pro-federalists in there then.

Steve V said...

"Good riddance.

Glad to see DIon shaking things up in Quebec"

Don't disagree with the idea, but the manner is unreal.

Anonymous said...

This is beyond ridiculous. Wiped out in 3 QC by-elections, Chretien goes after Martin (again), and now hours before the Throne Speech, we are playing pin the tail on the donkey. With all this crap, Harper's even started to look good.

Steve V said...

"With all this crap, Harper's even started to look good."

Let's not get carried away :)

knb said...

Well, the announcement may be true but a href="http://www.garth.ca/weblog/"Turner says the caucus meeting went well.

We know he's unlikely to say it went poorly, but in general, he seems to give pretty fair accounts.

knb said...

Don't know what happened there.

Try this:

Garth

Steve V said...

Thanks for the link knb. I don't doubt the meeting went well, what I'm questioning, why this all comes to a head TODAY. Don't we have other things to deal with?

Gayle said...

Every little thing that happens with the liberal party that even hints at dissention is going to hit the news. Period. No point getting all worked up about it.

There is nothing wrong with shuffling personnel. I wonder if Coderre would have been a good choice in any event.

Anonymous said...

Garth Turner has another perspective
http://www.garth.ca/weblog/2007/10/16/22-does-caucus/

Anonymous said...

Maybe the Harper comment is stretching it. But, with all these shenanigans going on, it is likely a very good thing for the country we are not running it.

Dion needs to go, period.

Michael said...

The way Dion tried to woo Coderre, do you blame Proulx for ditching the ship? Now, what other Quebec Liberal will touch this largely useless post with a 10 foot Sher-Wood? Why not just appoint a fictional character to the post, like He-Man perhaps?

http://www.humblenarrator.com/2007/10/16/dions-quebec-lieutenant-quits-he-man-rumoured-as-replacement/

Steve V said...

"No point getting all worked up about it."

Why would you want this on the plate today? Are we trying to give the media something to chew on, when supposedly people might actually be paying attention (more than normal). Now we have this little sidebar, which is completely needless in my mind. This isn't irrelevant, and I suspect tonight's commentary will bear me out.

Gayle said...

Yes anon - I am sure the liberals will get right on that. Or not...

What a small matter to have gained so much attention.

Gayle said...

steve - this happened today because Dion decided he wanted to replace his Quebec lieutenant on the weekend, before the Throne Speech.

From what I see the only person making a big deal out of it so far is you...

Steve V said...

gayle

I do understand your point, you are speaking to the gravity, I'm speaking to the optics. The media does feast on these things, which is why you should account for that in any dealings.

Steve V said...

"From what I see the only person making a big deal out of it so far is you..."

Gayle, but nothing is ever a big deal to you. Watch the preamble tonight, and then decide if it's just me.

Anonymous said...

Steve V - you are correct. We come across as the gang who can't shoot straight...again.

Gail- you seem indifferent to all these fumblings, or at least take it all in stride. At what point do you start worrying about the general perception that Dion can't cut it.
Whether you like it or not, there is a crisis in leadership.

knb said...

I presume this happened today because it's their first caucus meeting since the by-elections and leadership in Quebec was bound to come up.

The timing is lousy no doubt about it. That aside, attention must be paid to Quebec and this may all turn out for the best.

btw, could someone pls tell Jack to stick a sock in it? Good grief, he's walking from mike to mike, chest all puffed out, daring Dion.

Steve V said...

anon

I'm not making this a "leadership" question, but more about stopping the unforced errors.

Steve V said...

"btw, could someone pls tell Jack to stick a sock in it? Good grief, he's walking from mike to mike, chest all puffed out, daring Dion."

In full plume today is he?

Markus D. said...

"At what point do you start worrying about the general perception that Dion can't cut it."

Reminds me off the U.S. presidential election 04. I didn't buy into any of the "Kerry is not a leader/Bush is a leader" crap until he lost, after I predicted Kerry was going to win with 60%. That was a bit of a heart breaker for me.

I guess until Dion losses (and lets hope he doesn't) I won't believe it. But that's me. I'm a bit of an optimist.

Markus D. said...

"I'm not making this a "leadership" question, but more about stopping the unforced errors."

Ooops, sorry, I guess as an optimist I'll agree with:

"attention must be paid to Quebec and this may all turn out for the best."

Gayle said...

"Gail- you seem indifferent to all these fumblings, or at least take it all in stride. At what point do you start worrying about the general perception that Dion can't cut it.
Whether you like it or not, there is a crisis in leadership."

I will tell you what I think. I do not think the fault is with Dion. He won the leadership in a democratic contest. He was chosen to lead the party. There are elements of the liberals who do not like this - people who wanted their man to win and were disappointed when he did not.

These elements consistently work to undermine Dion in every way. This is not about Dion and his leadership - it is about the agenda of others. Caving in to those agendas by blaming Dion only serves to weaken your party.

If Dion goes, and you have another leadership race without first dealing with these fundamental rifts in the party you are going to go right back to the same infighting and backstabbing that plagued your party for the past decade or so.

This incident about Dion wanting to replace his Quebec lieutenant is routine. What makes it a "crisis" to some people is the fact that Coderre did not accept. Do you even know why he did not accept? Do you even care?

Obviously not - because god forbid we even consider there may be any other reason than Dion is a poor leader.

Way to stand behind your man people. Way to support your party.

I am sick and tired of giving my hard earned money to a party that is bent on serving the interests of certain individuals to the detriment of the country.

I would have donated no matter who won the leadership race (yes, even if Ignatieff won), but now I assure you I am donating only because of Dion. If your party wants to collapse under the weight of its own massive egos, then we are in for many, many years of Harper.

All I can say is thanks a lot.

Jason Bo Green said...

you are speaking to the gravity, I'm speaking to the optics

Me, I'm confused over the choice - Pablo Rodriguez? I'd get all Sam Peckinpah on him, not offer him a job.

Well, keep your enemies closer and all that, I guess. But I don't respect or like that guy for a second.

Oh well. But I agree fully with Steve. Poor timing, to say the least.

Anonymous said...

Please recall that this is same man who willingly offered to quit as he didn't get paid anything more for the role. Good riddance!
If true, Pablo is a good choice. He's not a Coderre pitbull and is respected with his recent enviro bill.
The Liberals are suffering in rural francophone Quebec. That is where the rebuilding must start.

Anonymous said...

Agreed poor timing coming from a guy who is proving more and more to be a poor leader.

To think that Chretien singles him out as a standout. The only question I have was whether that was before or after he accused Martin of having blood on his hands for Afghanistan. Talk about the kiss of death.

knb said...

Gayle, I don't think the problem is Dion, to the contrary, if given a chance I think he'll do well to make any lingering knives disappear.

CuriosityCat said...

The Liberal Party needs to stabilize things fast (assuming no election call this week). If the Liberals were in power, they would have a PM plus a Cabinet, to discuss matters and assist in decision-making.

Seems to me that we should be adopting a similar structure even though we are not in power (yet). Have Dion appoint his shadow cabinet and then make sure that we have collective responsibility for all key decisions (including input from all senior cabinet ministers on the selection of provincial leaders).

In unity there is strength - Dion and his senior Liberals should be working as a team. This will display strength, and ability to organize, rather than having all matters seemingly being done by Dion and landing on his plate.

Time to get serious about projecting strength, determination, professionalism and willingness to fight...

Gayle said...

I know you don't KNB. I simply wonder why people have such high expectations. His every move is under a microscope. I wonder if anyone can point to anyone who took over a role such as this and who had no problems, internal dissension and other such matters.

Too many liberals thought they would sweep back into a majority once the leadership contest was over. High expectations create great scrutiny.

The media would not pick up on every little detail if liberals were not wringing their hands over every little detail. It is tiresome.

Do we see the conservatives collapsing every time Harper does something dumb? No - because they shrug it off. Why don't the liberals do the same?

I am afraid of what Harper will do to our country. I desperately want to keep him out of a majority. I just wonder why the party I have chosen to support, a party that gladly takes my money, is so willing to sell us out to him.

Steve V said...

"Late Tuesday, he was set to announce that Senator Celine Hervieux-Payette will take the job.

Hervieux-Payette is a veteran Liberal with an extensive network and experience as an organizer. She once served as national campaign co-chair for Jean Chretien."

"Adding to the perception of disarray, the party's director general in Quebec, Serge Marcil, tendered his resignation Tuesday. Robert Fragasso, president of the Quebec wing, said Marcil will stay on the job until the end of the week but has lined up a new job in the private sector."

Gayle

I understand what you are saying, but I'm not censoring my posts, or things I want to discuss, in the name of party line. These aren't minor things, the Liberal Party, for whatever reason is in an unprecedented period of disarray (I welcome another historical example to trump this circumstance in Quebec). I appreciate your frustration, but appreciate mine at having to listen to the last hour of Liberal bashing, on two networks, when we are supposed to be focused on the throne speech. As it relates to fault, there is plenty to go around, and the leader is not immune, that's just the reality.


I think Curiousity Cat raises a good point.

Gayle said...

steve - I never said censor your posts. Post whatever you want. Just do not complain about 2 networks going on about the liberals when all this news of infighting comes from the liberals, and it is only news because other liberals are wringing their hands over it.

Dion has to clean house in Quebec. No question. This is where most of the undermining has taken place and I say he should go for it.

CC does raise a good point - I hope those undermining Dion will hear it.

Anonymous said...

Gayle said...
I simply wonder why people have such high expectations. His every move is under a microscope.


People have high expectations because leads Canada's so-called "natural governing party" and he wants to be Prime Minister. Is it that tough to figure out? Sheesh.

Gayle said...
Too many liberals thought they would sweep back into a majority once the leadership contest was over. High expectations create great scrutiny.


Well, the payback for such Liberal arrogance is a bitch this time, ain't it.


Gayle said...
The media would not pick up on every little detail if liberals were not wringing their hands over every little detail. It is tiresome.


Sure they would pick up on every little detail, and it has nothing to do with hand wringing. There are serious divisions and infighting going on that threaten to destroy the Liberal party...that make for pretty interesting news. And yep, I bet it is tiresome following and funding a bunch of backbiting losers.


Gayle said...
Do we see the conservatives collapsing every time Harper does something dumb? No - because they shrug it off. Why don't the liberals do the same?


Simple, because we are not the same. Our party is united and under the firm leadership of one man. Besides, as conservatives, we have dealt with political adversity long than you Libs, so we are better at it.


Gayle said...
I am afraid of what Harper will do to our country. I desperately want to keep him out of a majority.


I seem to hear this alot from the left. Just what is it exactly you think he will do in 4 years?

Gayle said...
I just wonder why the party I have chosen to support, a party that gladly takes my money, is so willing to sell us out to him.


Simple again, because they are broke and don't have a prayer of forming the government in the forseeable future.

Gayle said...

Silly little anon - thanks for all the great analysis. Wow - what deep insight.

Anyway, Steve and I were talking as mature adults. Perhaps you can join the discussion when you can do the same.

Steve V said...

" Just do not complain about 2 networks going on about the liberals when all this news of infighting comes from the liberals, and it is only news because other liberals are wringing their hands over it."

If you're speaking to discipline, then I completely agree.

Steve V said...

"Steve and I were talking as mature adults"

Speak for yourself ;)

Jim said...

Is this better Gayle, no longer anon. I though my analysis was pretty good, thanks.

Silly little lefty.

DM said...

Man I hope Ignatieff starts wearing some of the absolute clusterf*** that the LPCQ has become.

If this story is true, Dion reaches out to Iggy's number one Quebec MP, is turned down and ten minutes later, the story is in the media.

Just to repeat: Dion reaches out, is turned down and gets screwed publicly on a somewhat important day.

And then he reaches out to PRod -- Iggy's second major Quebec MP -- and is turned down again. And it is also in the media within the hour.

Michael Ignatieff is either behind this (which I dont believe) or his folks are absolutely out of control and are destroying the Liberal party that he obviously still hopes to lead.

I wish a reporter would put a microphone in front of him and ask him (a) why did Coderre/PRod turn down the job; and (b) why did they decide it was in the best interest of the party and the Leader to go to the media about it.

Ignatieff's Quebec folks, combined with Chretien's book, Kinsella's response and the likely Martin retort still to come are making me really wonder why I am a Liberal.

Gayle said...

Steve - you must know I like you, even when I disagree (which you also must admit is rare...). :)

I like coming here because the debate is intelligent and mature. Why, I can even vent my frustrations and only have to deal with one conservative troll who thinks the debate is about something it isn't.

And yes - I was speaking to discipline. And I guess my comments towards this particular post were more in line with attacking the lack of party discipline rather than Dion for the timing. I am not sure how he can be held responsible for that (I have unfounded suspicions that he may have been lead to believe Coderre would accept - these are generally the type of things people feel out first, but that is simply pure speculation).

Jim - I should have known it was you. Thanks for identifying yourself. It is no small courtesy to do so.

Gayle said...

dm - that is exactly what I am talking about.

At one point during the leadership race I was feeling comfortable with the idea of Ignatieff as leader, even though he would not have been my choice, however with all that has happened since Dion won I think having Iggy as leader would be suicide.

Whether or not it is his fault, his people are causing problems. They have to shut up or get lost.

Jim said...

Gayle said...
Jim - I should have known it was you. Thanks for identifying yourself. It is no small courtesy to do so.

Logging in all the time is a pain, but for you, anything.

Nice to know I am memorable to you.

Anyway, good luck in fixing the sorrows of your broken party

Steve V said...

gayle

I appreciate your comments, it would be boring to agree all the time.

dm

I thought the same thing, quite strange that the one and two turn down Dion, although Coderre apparently had "personal reasons". The real kicker is Pablo, because he had the night to think about it, and somebody should have told him his "duty".

jim

"Nice to know I am memorable to you."

I forgot about you already.

nacho libre said...

Celine Hervieux-Payette seems like a good choice even if it was bungled. The key to winning at least a minority victory is to stop obsessing over Que, focus on winning more seats in Ont, BC and the Atlantic. It appears as if the Quebec wing is out to sabatoge Dion.

On the speech,

5 priorities again? They couldnt even finish the last five?

I think we can all agree on improving Actic soveignty.

Absolutely, do not agree with staying in Afghan till 11.

Law and order, do we have a major crime problem in this country?

Reform the Senate, will never happen

Another GST cut, ridcules

Finally, Quebec will seperate by by default at this rate.

nacho libre said...

Jim, the Libs have problems in Que, but your party is still stuck at 34%. At this point the only party with anything to smile about right now is the Greens.

nacho libre said...

Did Coderre catch something in Afghan? Both Pablo and Coderre have some explaining to do. I hope then do not have leadership aspirations...