Thursday, October 30, 2008

"Electability"

Another "senior" Liberal, who refuses to be named, probably because his/her analysis is so ridiculously obvious to be embarrassing. You mean, electability is a consideration?:
'Getting an electable leader' will be crucial, one insider says, if the party is to position itself as a viable alternative to the Tories

Thought I might put up a poll, to see if others agree with the electability argument:

9 comments:

Joseph said...

Thanks for a good laugh, Steve.

I answered for the Herculean challenge, btw.

The only caveat I will add is the example of the Democrats quick rallying around Kerry in the 2004 Democratic primary race.

It is possible to take the theme of "electability" too far, meaning folks become so focused on the resume that they forget the other aspects - connecting with voters, comfortable in their own skin, having a clear vision, ability to run a successful campaign, etc. These are qualities people sometimes think all politicians possess but which some possess in spades compared to others.

A charismatic person can overcome a candidate who "on paper" looks like they ought to waltz right into office (as we have all seen in various situations).

I suspect that may have been what the "mystery" talker was trying to explain. With my particularly low opinion of Canadian journalists at the moment, I wouldn't be surprised if the writer is the one who watered it down to a ridiculously obvious point. Perhaps they just explained the observation on the only only level they could understand ; ).

Steve V said...

Fair point on Kerry for sure. What looks strong at one moment in time, looks much different after the candidate begins to wear.

whopitulia said...

How can we really know who has that magic quality we call electability? Of course the boosters of the various candidates will all argue hard that their guy/gal has the royal jelly. But really it's like reading tea leaves, casting a voodoo spell or trying to levatate a table using only the power of your mind. Ultimately it's in the hands of the voters. Maybe we should just poll every day. The other wild cards are verbal gaffees, scandals and all manner of other random events that can quickly turn a politician from electable to roadkill in a matter of days.

olaf said...

Steve,

Is it obvious? Is it? Because you guys did pick Dion last time, right?

Anonymous said...

Just in: Harper calls for review of financial systems. Another idea taken from the unelectable Dion. Goes to show, all you need is good hair and an ability to steal shamelessly.

deBeauxOs said...

Oh good grief. Just pick someone who appears remotely shag-able.

Of course that just eliminated the usual suspects.

Antonio said...

i had to vote for volpemania

because its mad night

and his conituency is throwing a party at the local cemetary

WesternGrit said...

Ruby Dhalla, Scott Brison, Brian Tobin, Ralph Goodale, Justin Trudeau, Jane Stewart, and several others are all relatively good-looking, personally charming, quick on their feet, AND (unlike several conservative options) actually are quite intelligent... any one of them.

We have lots of talent folks. It's just that, being the "policy-focused" group we are (we LOVE policy - heck, we even have a platform during an election), we tend to forget about the need for good "retail politics"...

jarrid said...

Dion was not electable, so talking about electability in a leader is apposite, if obvious.

Michael Ignatieff would be such an electable leader for the Libs:

a) He would turn the page on the Trudeau vision of Canada which is long overdue for the Liberal Party.

b) He doesn’t think participating in a war is inherently bad, even one started by George W. Bush.

c) He can be open-minded on tough labour strife, as shown in his backing of Margaret Thatcher in the bitter coal miner’s strike in England.

If he can get past the Liberal leadership convention, he’ll make a worthy opponent for Harper. If I was Iggy, my first order of business would be to co-opt Justin Trudeau.

People say his stay outside of Canada is a minus, to me it is clearly a plus, having lived in England and the U.S. broadened his scope and gave him a dose of realism.