The Tyee asks Who Are the NDP’s 13 Dissidents and writer Andrew MacLeod succeeds in presenting a fair evaluation. He shows the recusants are a diverse lot but not necessarily the party’s best and brightest, particularly the latter. Gary Mason, by the way, may not be pleased with The Tyee’s review of his punditry.
Mason’s colleague Rod Mickleburgh demonstrates a better understanding of BC politics and the Globe and Mail’s headline writer added a sharp lead, James at pains to mop up the blood with a knife in her back. The members aiming to remake the NDP chose a strange time for it, just as Gordon Campbell was preparing to leave in ignominious retreat.
|Anyone after Jenny?|
With cancellation of Sunday’s emergency caucus meeting, it seems that one or both sides realized there are better ways of handling disputes than exchanging hurtful blows on the public stage. Mickleburgh quotes acting caucus chair Kathy Corrigan as saying that James has no intention of acceding to demands of the rebels.
That suggests the dissidents signaled willingness to retreat, quiet the disloyal rhetoric and work on a solution. Of course, having stayed a minority with almost none of the caucus’ heavy hitters, there was little choice. That and the fact they have been thumbing their noses at the party’s management structures which, through the Provincial Council, gives voice to every constituency in the province. Unless anarchy is the preferred state, the only time for changes to the party rules is at one of the customary conventions where rules are always up for discussion.
Rod Mickleburgh has covered provincial news beats for many years and has had a reputation for fair reporting. The people organizing this uprising ought to pay attention to Mickleburgh’s impressions:
Ms. Kwan seems to have a funny notion of those “democratic principles” she accuses the embattled Ms. James of eroding.
Let’s see, the party’s provincial council, made up of delegates from across B.C., voted 84 per cent against having the leadership contest that Ms. Kwan is advocating.
A majority of caucus, including most of their strongest performers on the NDP front benches, supports Ms. James staying on the job.
And the NDP, although admittedly this could change without Gordon Campbell to kick around and given the New Democrats’ own bilious bickering, has been heading public-opinion polls for the past year.
But who knows, maybe those political geniuses in the Baker’s Dozen of caucus rebels have a brilliant alternative whom they’ve kept under wraps until now. Gordon Wilson, anyone?