Friday, October 17, 2008

There Are No Chretien/Martins This Time

The Chretien/Martin feud traumatized some Liberals so severely that they think it's happening again. It isn't.

A feud of Chretien/Martin proportions is an unusual thing. Martin just couldn't accept that Chretien won the leadership. As finance minister he tried to control all the other departments, and he openly campaigned for Chretien's job for years. Chretien, scrappy and stubborn as ever, stayed in power after he should have left in the hopes of leaving Martin too old to reach his goal. Or at least that's what seemed to be happening.

The Liberal party still has rivals, in particular Dion, Ignatieff and Rae, but none of them have exhibited any feuding behavior. Ignatieff and Rae have been consistently loyal to Dion (especially Rae). They didn't take advantage of his faltering in the polls in any way. They were responsible party members, praising and supporting their leader. And despite some unconfirmed reports during the last leadership race, Rae and Ignatieff remain BFFs. They talk on the phone every day. They may decide they want to run for the same job again, but there's no animosity.

Now that there's another leadership race on the horizon, I think we can all calm down about the so-called infighting. It just ain't there. Who knows, all the allegations of it might be from Tory trolls, as a recent commenter on my site suggested.


Anonymous said...

If only we had Paul Martin!

We would have had a Majority Government.It is so maddening that Jean Chretien and his henchman like Kinsella did everything to destroy the Liberal Party prior to leaving.

Jean Chretien's closest friends are in jail or headed there because of their greed through sponsorship.

Its too bad Martin paid the political price for Eddy Goldenberg's and Jean Pelltier;s mismanagment of PMO.

Yappa said...

To anonymous 12:46 -

I dunno, I just never got this emotional anti-Chretien/anti-Martin thing. They both had stengths and weaknesses. They both did a lot of good for the country, and they both failed the country.

Martin seemed to open up the Sponsorship scandal inquiry as a way to get back at the Chretienites, which was pretty nasty. And then Sponsorship brought down Martin, even though he had nothing to do with it.

But to claim that Paul Martin would have won the day, when he fumbled the last election, is a bit much.

Demosthenes said...

Friend, if you think Iggy/Rae wasn't a feud in 2006, you weren't paying attention. It was pretty much just as vicious as Chretien/Martin was.

It may be different this time. But if the party continues to exist solely as a vehicle for power, instead of a philosophical movement and something people actually believe in, factionalism is inevitable.

(And so is dissolution.)