There is plenty of suspicion in this party, and that is borne from past behaviours, it's a LEARNED response. Because of this reality, it is INCUMBENT on the "brass" to produce a process which is entirely in the light of day. Reading Bryden's piece, it really is frustrating and disappointing if true:
Federal Liberals will be asked to postpone electing a new leader for 18 to 22 months.
Under the party's constitution, a vote should take place by late October to choose a successor to Michael Ignatieff, who resigned after leading the once-mighty party to a historic defeat on May 2.
But the party's board of directors has unanimously finalized a plan to get around that constitutional requirement.
The party will stage a special virtual convention on June 18, at which delegates will be asked to amend the constitution.
The proposed amendment calls for a new leader to be chosen sometime between Nov. 1, 2012, and Feb. 28, 2013.
The precise date would be set five months in advance by the board, in consultation with the Liberals' parliamentary caucus and riding presidents.
Who came up with these dates, AND where is the EVIDENCE that this decision is really the result of consultations and feedback? Does the brass not realize many rank and file don't trust their word or interpretation of what they hear, they prefer an upfront account, let us all see the feedback. There is only one solution that respects true will of the party rank and file, that really does speak to one member, one vote and that is to have a clear vote on future leadership dates. For example, where the hell is the option for delaying one year? I know MANY Liberals who don't want a quick race, but also don't want to wait a full two years? If we are given this stark choice, then you force an unfortunate choice between two perceived bad options.
You will never convince me that we can't have a vote on amending the Constitution for leadership, followed by 2 or three date options for alternatives. The fact we can't seem to incorporate OPTIONS with the alternative leaves me very concerned, makes me think this is a "pat on the head" exercise and ultimately the brass will decide what's best. Talk about a missed opportunity to come out of this process with a respected outcome, NO this process will lead to many feeling slighted, many feeling their voice wasn't really heard, they were given choices DICTATED by others.
You're blowing it Liberal Party apparatus, you're BLOWING IT BAD. Who decided 18-22 months is the only option available? I want to know where this "consensus" comes from, where is the empirical evidence to support, rather than simply certain people dictating terms? Beginning the "new" era of the Liberal Party with the same old TOP DOWN dictation is a joke, it tells me people don't get it AT ALL. What I'm sensing, all this consultation is nothing more than band aids, rather than a REAL respect for the people that keep this TUG afloat with their money, energy and passion. We will have a choice apparently, but without a middle ground option, you've left many with no choice and disrespected their wishes for a truly open and transparent process.