Tiny Tim Hudak, leader of the Ontario Conservatives and his new best friend Premier Dalton McGuinty passed their Putting Students First Act today in the Ontario Legislature. This legislation denies teachers their rights to collective bargaining and arbitrarily changes their terms of employment. Whether the legislation is even legal under Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms will have to be determined by the courts.
But no matter what the courts decide, the act might be the final hurrah for both leaders. Timmy Hudak is the most vulnerable. His party is already fed up with him. He took a strong lead in the polls going into the 2011 election and turned the lead into a miserable loss. The loss of Kitchener-Waterloo (a formerly Conservative seat) the other day was his death knell. He has failed as party leader. He has upset both the rabid right wing and the softer old style Ontario Tories.
The rabid right of Ontario’s Conservatives is dominated by a mix of the religious right and the Ontario Landowners Association. The Landowner members are actually Libertarians and are kissing kin to the American Tea Party fringe of the Republicans and Alberta’s Wildrose Alliance.
Tiny Tim should have realized that when he and his wife set out to make him leader of this pack, the dangers he was facing. Like a scavenging wolf pack, the leader leads only until he falters. Then a new leader emerges, kills and eats the old leader and the pack carries on.
McGuinty, on the other hand, runs with a completely different pack. Liberals tend to be more like lemmings. He was originally chosen as a compromise candidate for party leader in 1996. He is the only person to ever win the party’s leadership after coming fourth on the first convention ballot. He was the choice of the party’s right wing.
Dalton McGuinty answers to his party on the weekend of September 29. So far the Liberal Party web site has made no mention of the mandatory leadership review required by the party’s constitution. There are certainly enough Liberal Party members in Ontario who are aghast at how McGuinty has treated Liberal friends such as the teachers. Let us hope those Liberals do not show their displeasure by boycotting the convention.
The only problem that we see in voting out McGuinty as leader is the need to find an alpha member of the pack to challenge him. Where can you find an alpha lemming except at the bottom of a cliff?
Copyright 2012 © Peter Lowry
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