But I'm still completely discouraged and unhappy about the campaign. My number one reason is the way Dion won. It was legal but it seems shady and underhanded.
Dion came into the convention in 4th place. As Stephen Harper reminded us this week, 80% of the delegates voted for someone else on the first and second ballots. How did Dion overcome that? It took three things: a secret deal with the guy in 3rd place; a youth demographic supporting the guy in 3rd place who were likely to follow their candidate; and some very precise timing. The timing was this: Kennedy didn't announce that he was throwing his support to Dion until after the third ballot candidate names had been announced - which was when Ignatieff and Rae discovered that Kennedy was not on the ballot, and it was too late for them to react.
Contrast this with some truly noble conventions, like the 1995 NDP convention when Svend Robinson got the most votes on the first ballot, but conceded and threw his support behind Alexa McDonough to ensure party unity. Or the January, 1983 PC convention where Joe Clark resigned his leadership because 33% of delegates voted for a leadership review - even though 67% voted against a leadership review.
There was a mountain of hot air spouted during the campaign about party reform, but what did it mean? A whole lot of steaming nothing. The man who "owned" the reform issue, Gerard Kennedy, is the other part of the secret deal. Delegates voted on moving to a one member-one vote format for future leadership conventions, but they voted down the motion. And what was the main reason not to move to this infinitely fairer format? They thought they'd lose the big cosy convention.
Ick ick ick.