Ignatieff -A Political Lightweight in the Heavyweight Division

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Michael Ignatieff MPTHUNDER BAY – “People touch my private parts all day long.”  That is the latest political comment on enhanced airport screening from Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff. The federal Liberal boss is the source of some of the most inane comments.

Remember Ignatieff’s comment that the puffin is a good symbol for the Liberal Party? “It’s a noble bird because it has good family values. They stay together for 30 years. They lay one egg (each year). They put their excrement in one place. They hide their excrement.… They flap their wings very hard and they work like hell. This seems to me a symbol for what our party should be.”

For Canada as a country to punch above its weight and carry its image abroad, Ignatieff’s comments sure don’t make the Liberal leader sound much like the Harvard professor that the intellectual Ignatieff was before heading back to Canada.

Instead “Iggy” is sounding more like Gilligan than the Professor.

That is maybe a little harsh, but the reality is that the Liberals are holding poll numbers that likely have many wondering why they rushed to anoint Ignatieff as party leader. Ignatieff has lead the Liberals to Dion numbers all while he was supposed to be the Liberal’s newest re-incarnation of the glory years of the Trudeau years.

Canadians are seeing through the bluster and the spin. They may not have embraced Stephen Harper and the Conservatives, but they sure don’t seem interested in handing the government over to the Liberals under Michael Ignatieff.

In fact across Canada, Liberals are starting to look to a real Trudeau as their next leader.

It can’t be all that positive for the Liberals when there are many people starting to look past their current leader and already starting to line up behind the “next one”.

Likely there will be Liberals willing to stay home in the next campaign, just as there are many who are leaving their chequebooks closed for the party under Ignatieff. Those will be the Liberals who will demand Ignatieff resign on election night if the party doesn’t form government.

Some are likely to start the demands on Monday night if the Liberals lose the Ontario Liberal Stronghold of Vaughn as widely expected.

Likely for the future of the Liberal party, having a new leader right now is on the minds of many in the party. However if there were a repeat of the Chretien/Martin debacle, Canadians will simply shrug off the party as not ready for prime time yet.

For Ignatieff, likely Monday night will be yet another long night in his political education. So far however his marks are not those any Liberal expected from their latest savior of the “National Governing Party”.

The reality however for the Liberals is that it is likely the last thing the party wants, but the one thing they really need is a solid majority for the Conservatives. That would give the next Liberal leader the opportunity to rebuild the Liberal Party from the ground up.

Since losing power five years ago, the minority governments have left the Liberals in perpetual election mode. It is wearing out the party financially, and mentally, and in Ignatieff’s latest walk into word weirdness, a demonstration that the former Professor is still a political lightweight.

James Murray

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