But for a party on life support, is Sheila Copps, a lightning rod for controversy, a woman who has roller-derby-style politics in her DNA, a figure as polarizing as any in an often polarized party, really the party president to dig Liberals out of their hole?
If you can’t win it, try to steal it by spreading lies, sowing confusion, destabilizing the rightful winner and wallowing in the slime.
The NDP leadership campaign is so far not promising to freshen up Canada’s progressive discourse, but it could be the best venue to measure the chilling effect of the bare-knuckled Conservative approach to politics on the country’s political conversation.
To hear the noise from the Conservative side of the House of Commons, one would think that the Halifax NDP MP and her colleague from Nickel Belt, Claude Gravelle, were treasonous subversives who should be drawn and quartered at dawn.
These will be tumultuous times because it is not only austerity that is driving this government in its war with labour. It is being driven by ideology and plain old politics.
Michael Ferguson has toiled diligently in the service of the New Brunswick government and is now on the brink of becoming Canada’s new auditor general. But he should never get the job.
The government’s penchant for using its reinforced Parliamentary arsenal to curtail debate has been par for the course for a governing party that routinely closed down Parliament in the face of political adversity in its minority days.
This year has been remarkable for the number of federal, provincial and territorial elections, but it will also be recorded as the year of the status quo.
It’s the opposition parties’ turn to see their already shortened Parliamentary wings clipped by Harper’s majority.
Among the prospective candidates, none worked more closely with Layton than Topp. He was at the late leader’s side until the very end.
So it is hard to imagine the federal NDP heading into its second consecutive leadership race without a serious female leadership candidate; not one freighted with symbolism, but one who carries a realistic chance to win.
It won't serve him well as Treasury Board president. In that pivotal capacity, he will be in charge of tightening the belt of the federal government, and doing so under the wary surveillance of a suspicious chattering class.
Quebec is re-engaging on the national scene on terms that closely mirror the constitutional accord whose failure sparked its two-decade estrangement.
Under the Constitution, the power to initiate a discussion to reform Canada's parliamentary institutions does not rest exclusively with the federal government.
There's an emerging narrative designed to place the Parliamentary media squarely in the Conservative crosshairs recently vacated by Michael Ignatieff's Liberals.
It's a mood enhanced by the fact that for the first time in two decades, the priority of the vast majority of Quebec's MPs is not to demonstrate that Canada is a failed federation.
As counterintuitive as it may seem, that starts with preserving part of the Bloc Québécois' legacy in federal politics.
Relegated to the wilderness on May 2, the Liberals don't even seem to be able to agree they need a compass.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper will be returning to the Commons later this spring in control of the two Houses of Parliament for the first time. Depending on the scope of his ambitions, such free rein with the levers of power could prove more risky for his
'The end of the world' was how one shaken lifelong Liberal insider described his party's slide to third place behind the NDP last week. Throughout its distinguished history, the Liberal Party of Canada has never been further from power than official oppos