The wonderment of Wynne’s winsome ways.

Since the basically corrupt and manipulated congress that chose her as leader of Ontario Liberals, Babel-on-the-Bay has not fawned over Premier Kathleen Wynne. It has not been a close relationship.

But this blog recognized early why she would come out on top in this June’s election. There was no way Ontario could throw Timmy Hudak a bone and the Pillsbury Dough girl, Andrea Horwath stumbled at the start of the campaign and never recovered.

Since the May budget from Finance Minister Charles Sousa, there was growing approval of Ms. Wynne and her party. And that budget was a pleasant surprise. It not only made sense but it addressed some basic issues that had needed to be fixed for some time.

In markets where working housewives have to pay $20 an hour to untaxed cleaning ladies, we actually offered to raise hard working home care workers closer to the poverty line. We might not have crossed all the “T’s” but the new pension plan makes for a much better future for today’s young people. And electrifying the GO trains is the only way we will get better efficiency and speed for commuters. We even approve of the more measured expenditure on the Ring of Fire.

Ontario is no easy province to govern and Wynne surprised us by the ease with which she moved into the premier’s chair and struggled with the problems from the McGuinty era. Seeing her survive the gas plants and Ornge and wind turbines was not only educational but impressive. It is a rare politician who can use basic honesty so effectively.

And it defied everything we knew about her politically. She got into politics during Premier Michael Harris’ reign of terror. Her approach was reactionary. She got into politics to fight against Harris’ amalgamation of Metropolitan Toronto. Those who were students of the emergence of Toronto as one of the greater cities of the world knew she was wrong. It was likely the only thing that Mike Harris did right—for all the wrong reasons. His objective was to dump a lot of provincial costs on the new city without giving it the money or taxation methodology to pay the bills. That mess is only now being straightened out.

It was because of her reactionary approach and her quiet presence in the McGuinty cabinet that we tended to dismiss her as a person of interest during the leadership contest. Nor did it help that the political Whigs who run things provincially here in Babel were supporting her.

But we are big enough to forgive her. Her forgiveness is not required.

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Copyright 2014 © Peter Lowry

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