Now that he's started pulling his inner circle together, some Liberals are privately worried that Ignatieff is simply importing his leadership team into the Opposition leader's office - much as former leader Paul Martin did, with disastrous results. Leadership campaign organizers aren't necessarily best suited to policy development and preparing to govern.
Moreover, some Liberals are grumbling that Ignatieff has made little effort thus far to include supporters of his former leadership rivals, Bob Rae and Dominic LeBlanc, in his inner circle.
Early days, so it's hard to say anything conclusive, but hopefully we'll see more "reaching out".
During the election campaign, I was quite critical of Warren Kinsella, because from my point of view, too much effort was wasted rehashing ancient history, entirely counter-productive. I suppose it's easy for an outsider to be critical, I didn't live the "camps" reality, nor do I have intimate knowledge of what actually occured, whether bitterness is entirely warranted. That aside, if Kinsella has moved on, that's good enough for me, and I'll support his "war room" guru status entirely. Kinsella will be an great asset, there's no doubting his skill and shrewd political instincts. I have a feeling the Liberals will be far more assertive and aggressive, proactive instead of reactive, with Kinsella leading the charge.
One appointment, which looks promising:
Rocco Rossi, CEO of Ontario's Heart and Stroke Foundation, is expected to assume the party's top administrative job, replacing Greg Fergus. Fergus, who was appointed national director by former leader Stephane Dion, tendered his resignation Monday.
Rossi's expertise as an innovative fundraiser could be a huge asset for the cash-strapped Liberals, who've been struggling to adapt to the ban on corporate donations imposed in 2004.
"Expertise as an innovative fundraiser" is music to my ears, because the capacity to counter the Conservatives is entirely contingent on cold, hard cash. I certainly get the sense from Ignatieff, that fundraising will be a central thrust and I'm entirely confident that the coming months will show we've started to turn the corner.