Green Party Canada 2010 leadership race?

Frank De Jong's Hat in the Ring?

Frank De Jong's Hat in the Ring?

It’s getting pretty obvious now that Frank De Jong, the long time leader of the Green Party of Ontario is thinking about the Leadership slot in the Green Party of Canada. According to Chris Tindal, Frank announced his intention not to run for the GPO leadership again, so there will be a leadership vote at the GPO convention in London in November of 2009. That’s interesting enough in and of  itself, but to cap it all, Frank went on to say, in French, that he would like to be the Leader of the GPC. Sure he backpedalled a little, mouthing that the doesn’t want to take on Elizabeth May, and only if the job is open, blah blah blah. It all adds up to: Frank wants the top job, and he’s got the French that is a pre-requisite.

This is an interesting development, for a whole bunch of reasons. In the

Incumbent Elizabeth May

Incumbent Elizabeth May

couple of months after Elizabeth May won the leadership race against David Chernushenko, she systematically replaced staffers and functionaries with her own loyalists from the Sierra club. She didn’t reach out to her defeated opponent, and as a result of these actions, there was a large out-flux of relatively skilled and experienced Green Party of Canada volunteers. The main beneficiaries of this were the Green Party of Ontario, and the Liberal Party where they were more than welcome. Since then we’ve been in the peculiar position of having the Provincial Party being run more effectively than the federal party, despite

Jim Fannon David chernushenko, and Elizabeth May in televised debate

Jim Fannon David chernushenko, and Elizabeth May in televised debate

the fact that the GPO budget is less than 10% of the federal Party.

The Green Party of Ontario has a much smaller membership base in Ontario than the GPC, but it can safely be assumed that Frank De Jong will retain the loyalty of the majority of the Provincial Party membership. This will be especially true with a Provincial leadership run going all out, as no-one will want to cross Frank under that scenario. In addition, the GPO Leadership bid will take all of those skilled, and hard working GPO types, and train them intensively in contested leadership battles. That is very important, because Frank will need to be recruiting a lot of new members to launch a successful challenge, and will need people around him who know how to recruit and organise.

The timing is very relevant indeed. Frank needed to make his intentions clear right now because he is certain that there are a lot of activists and organizers in Ontario that will be looking for a leadership candidate  to replace Elizabeth May. It’s not only Ontario, Alberta is lock stock and barrel opposed to Elizabeth, and that Province is potentially extremely rich hunting grounds for a bluegreen candidate. British Columbia is pretty ripe as well, and although Adrian Carr is one of the most competent Elizabeth May supporters in Canada, her own influence in BC has declined over the past two years. Frank is probably counting on his early ‘declaration’ to scare off any local contenders from these arenas.

So what are Franks’ odds? I’d have to say that at this moment, they look pretty good. Elizabeth May has enormous name recognition, and the fact is that a large chunk of the existing membership was attracted to HER green party. It is still potential, not on-the-ground facts, but Frank can draw on Alberta and Ontario to win over a strong minority of existing members. British Columbia will be more of an even battle, but there will be a good response to Frank out there. The Maritime, for what it’s worth has been pretty thoroughly coddled by Elizabeth, but there are so few members that I question the value of this. Provided Frank starts organizing immediately, his team can start recruiting new members, and setting up the national infrastructure that will be needed to win in this battle.

There is of course the ten ton elephant in the room, that being the next Federal election. Much will depend upon how well Elizabeth performs in her next outing to the polls. If Elizabeth wins a By-Election, or wins a seat in  the intervening general election, then all bets are off. No-one will be too keen on dumping the leader if she makes history by being the first federally elected Green in Canada. Conversely, if she fails to win a seat, then the knives will come out for sure. In that scenario, Greens will likely decide that they need to renew the Party infrastructure, and that Team Elizabeth is not up to the job. It will be very hard for Elizabeth May to spin anything less than a seat in Parliament into a victory, and she will lose most of the Party establishment that she hasn’t yet alienated.

Then there’s the question of the actual Leadership campaign team. Who is there available to Elizabeth to manage her re-election? Sharon Labchuk again? No offense to Sharon, but she cannot run a campaign. She doesn’t have  the basic skills required. Her team has proved itself unable to recruit large numbers of members during their tenure in charge of the GPC, so why should we think they could do any better during a leadership run? Adrian Carr? Genest in Quebec? Adrian is the obvious choice, but Quebec is a complete write-off for Elizabeth so long as Genest wears the deputy leaders crown.

Whatever way it shakes out, I am really looking forward to a good race. Since the only way to unseat Elizabeth is to out recruit her, I expect that there will be a lot of new members recruited. In all probability, Alberta and Ontario memberships will be revitalised, and drawn back into the Party. This has to be a good thing, and provided Elizabeth doesn’t crap all over her opponents, and actually makes an effort to engage and reconcile in the event of a victory, then these Provinces can contribute loads of talent and skilled partisans for the GPC ongoing. Whichever way it goes, I encourage every one of my readers to renew their memberships, and get involved in the upcoming race. Just please, please, keep your’ cool, and don’t get caught up in mud-slinging like the contestants in the last race. Never forget that today’s opponent is tomorrows ally. Elizabeth’s current predicament is a direct result of castigating her opponent, and if you don’t learn from past mistakes, you will be doomed to repeat them.

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29 Responses

  1. Nice post and I share many of your thoughts of keeping the leadership race productive. I hope it becomes a source of great passion for the Green Party, but one that is fostered and tapped once the leadership contest is over.

    I would share all the things I think about the upcoming leadership race, but it would probably end up being longer than your post, so I will just share what is hopefully an interesting perspective on one possible contestant: Adriane Carr.

    While Carr is indeed a long-time Elizabeth May loyalist, seemingly disqualifying her from a potential run for some, I do believe that before this is all worked out and the contest begins, Carr may indeed be running for the top spot in the GPC. In fact it is the opinion of many Greens that Carr has had her sights on winning the GPC leadership long before she became an Elizabeth May supporter. Given the makeup of the membership as you allude to, having May on one’s side would be a tremendous benefit.

    There is no doubt that the leadership contest will be an intense affair. The fervour, bordering on anger, of those relegated and intimidated to the sidelines during May’s assent, an on the out since the last election, will only be matched by the passion of her powerful activist backers.

    Which again brings me back to my thoughts on Adriane Carr. If I am right in believing that she would like to become the leader of the GPC, she will identify that she is likely the sole contestant who can bridge the gap between May’s machine and the external machine eager to get back in.

    To make that point clear Carr will have to do two things. First she will have to show the external machine that she has independently criticized (and stood up to) the current leadership. Second she will have to make an issue of the leadership contest the idea that if you go either way – with May (if she runs) or with the champion of the disconcerted – you risk unnecessarily tearing apart the Party. Unnecessarily, because her leadership would not. If she can do that, she may win over soft “anti-May” support in provinces like Ontario and Alberta. Should she be able to do that, she may be the consensus choice in a Party that champions consensus. And that could spell victory.

    I should also add that this is not an endorsement of Adriane Carr and should not be construed as support for her if she is to run for the leadership. This comment is only my independent speculation on the matter, one amongst many thoughts and feelings about the leadership contest, which will shape the next era of the Green Party.

  2. Very interesting.

    Don’t know when yesterday you posted this, but I’m surprised that Mark’s is the only comment thus far.

    I’m going to go ahead and take up a number of BGB’s points.

    I’m not even in the GPC- in fact, a competitor… but I had heard musings that if someone is going to take on May for the leadership that they will need to begin showing themselves well ahead. In my experience, that would be a year.

    So I would say that Frank is being relatively early. Not ‘jumping the gun,’ but getting going early.

    Some of that timing may be OGP concerns… but it doesn’t look that way.

    Elizabeth May would have known before this that Frank was considering. And maybe that has a lot to do with her looking more seriously at running in Ontario.

    Its pretty clear even to an outsider that there is a mutual antipathy between her and Ontario Greens. I can’t speak to what proportion- but at least a great deal of the activists.

    Presumably it didn’t start out that way. But May’s style of leadership is going to naturally rub wrong where the organization has the most organizational depth.

    Conversely, she can be the centre of the universe in Nova Scotia where Green organization was thin to say the least. She has amplified that by building a parallel organization in Central Nova that in practice alternately ‘pads’ and bypasses the national organization.

    Running for a seat in Ontario would have meant leaving that behind and having to make accomodations with Ontario Greens rather than running over and around them.

    From paying attention to her actions as well as her words, about her intentions for the next election, I was quite sure that until pretty recently she was only paying the necessary lip service to running anywhere but Central Nova in the next general election.

    But things change.

  3. This is the second blog I’ve seen recently that accuses Elizabeth of either campaigning for leadership negatively, or spurning her opponent in victory. If that’s the case, then I must have missed it. I remember a few mildly negative things said by each campaign team which I mainly attributed to their partisan passion (and discounted) – and I recall very little (if any) from the candidates themselves, and certainly nothing in writing.

    (It was Chernushenko who quite notably failed to congratulate his opponent in his concession speech).

    And am I the only one that remembers a certain “Special Deputy to the Leader”, hired on at Elizabeth’s direct insistence at almost the same salary as her? I know there was opposition to this from within her own team – especially Sharon, but May insisted on this quite formal and costly outreach.

    I admit the endeavor seems to have eventually failed, but it is hard to divine from afar how that played out. Which personality was more to blame? What actions led to it? I have an opportunity coming up to hear another side of this, so I’ll see what I can learn.

    One thing I can say though, I sure wish my opponent, haven beaten me, would hire me on at 80% of his salary to be his assistant. With enemies like that, who needs friends?

  4. Hi Mark,
    Adrian Carr, David Chernushenko, Frank De Jong are the three obvious potential candidates, based on name recognition within the Green Party. Adrian did get the benefit of decent Press coverage, and David seems to be pretty well ‘out’. Barring a really public figure from the sidelines somewhere, maybe a three horse race?
    Hi Ken,
    I think that deep inside, Elizabeth just didn’t realise that the GPC is different from the Sierra Club. In a club, I’m willing to bet that those who are on the out leave, and don’t come back. In the GPC, those who are ‘out’ sharpen their knives. The level of commitment is deeper, and getting back into it is as simple as picking up a phone and dialling some like minded buddies. Elizabeth has probably come to a realization that you cannot make people go away, and that if you don’t listen to people, they’ll ‘get’ you. As far as the Central Nova ‘operation’, it may or may not be useful to her. As a political base it is close to non-existent. There is a small core of volunteers, and some basic infrastructure to run her leadership thingy. How will it be used? That will tell a lot.
    Now I’m straying into an area best left alone. I am emphatically not going to advise Elizabeth how to lock up the GPC, although she has the potential to do so if she re-thinks EVERYTHING.

  5. Hi Erich,
    The last leadership campaign was pretty vicous. Sharon Labchuk was vitriolic, and with no grounds whatsoever. She was encouraged by Adrian Carr, although Elizabeth was non-commital about the chernushenko ‘Outrages’. Get in touch with Jeff Brownridge, or James O’Grady and ask them how unpleasant it got. I do remember the hiring of David, and really applauded it, but I really don’t know what happened after that. It may be that good relations were impossible after the race, and it could also be that Sharon kept the pot well stirred. That is pure speculation on my part, although from what I know it fits.

  6. “The Green Party of Ontario has a much smaller membership base in Ontario than the GPC”

    And Elizabeth May is famous and liked. And many of the GPC members joined in large measure because of her.

    BUT…
    the vast majority of those folks joined of their own accord.

    What matters in a seiously contested leadership race is the organized signing of new members, and getting them to vote. Elizabeth May has not endeared herself to people with organizational experience. Frank DeJong has.

    As probably has Adrian Carr. I don’t really see how its feasible for Carr to be the kind of feel-good for everybody candidate Mark is suggesting she could be.

    Another elephant in the room is all the staffers May has at her fingertips. Think sudden upsurge in memberships from Nova Scotia. Very big fish in small pond phenomena. All parties have a prohibition on staffers working on leadership campaigns. But that generally goes with strong and independent Leadership Campaign Committees. Which dollars to doughnuts you don’t have. Its something people should be looking to generally.

    And as to this specific problem, its such a basic fairness issue- and so easy for contendors to fudge if there isn’t active oversight- you must be able to do something to raise the imprtance of the concern even before there is an effective committee in place. It could even be the issue that gets the ball rolling on putting life into a leadership race committee.

    • Yes, the bevy of paid staffers at Elizabeths beck and call is, and will be an issue. It actually is the core of Frank’s dilemma. Declare your intentions early, and the staffers will have plenty of time to realize their jobs are at stake. What happens next is a years worth of rejected memberships, de-certified EDA’s, and highly partisan work. If Frank didn’t declare, then he’s that much more likely to face a handful of vote splitting also rans.
      I’d be curious Ken, do you really think that Central Nova can pull thousands of new memberships? If so, why haven’t they done so already?
      I don’t know how effective the Council will be in overseeing the race. They will surely prohibit staffers getting involved, but that prohibition is pretty worthless don’t you think? No-one will ever know who dialled all those phone numbers, and delivered that voter ID pitch. Still, it doesn’t matter how many people you have on staff, if you cannot manage their activities effectively. Elizabeth will need a good manager this time around.

  7. This is moving fast, and my last comments on Central Nova and its potential role were made without reading BGB’s.

    That said, I see no reason to change or hedge them. The crowd here in CN has never had a reason to expand the membership. And I agree that the active core is pretty small and not apparently much good at organizing anything. BUT, I think it would be pretty easy to sign up well over a thousand members in NS, just on word of mouth and email solicitations among the interconected ‘in crowds’. Not going to swamp what comes form elsewhere, but not exactly a trifle either. And paid staffers who have nothing better to figure out will figure out how to do it more actively than that. They may not be much good for building voter contact, but they know really well how to appeal to the chosen.

    And as to the comparison to the Sierra Club. She may have pushed people away there too. But I guess not, and it wouldn’t need to have come up. Even a big NGO is different. The people who become active in one are much more self selecting than who walks in the door of a political party. Plus, compared to political parties all NGOs are more staff and top leadership volunteer dependent. Political parties are chock a block with people who have a different idea of how things should be run.

  8. “I don’t know how effective the Council will be in overseeing the race. They will surely prohibit staffers getting involved, but that prohibition is pretty worthless don’t you think? No-one will ever know who dialled all those phone numbers…:”

    It boils down to having a strong and independent committee. As long as the compostion is balanced they have a free hand to intervene. Its not a quasi-judicial practice. If they have good reason to think something is going on, just them suggesting it has a powerful effect when everyone is watching.

    If you don’t have provisions for such a committee, you better get it. There is plenty of experience and practice in other parties to choose from.

  9. I guess then that it will come down to: “Which is more valuable? Paid staff in a single location, or a distributed campaign with lots of knowledgable volunteers?”. Time will tell, but it will certainly be interesting! There is enormous potential out there that is relatively untapped, so anybody could end up with the winning recruitment formula.

  10. If May wins a seat then there won’t be a leadership race period.

    the question is more how well she has to perform to not be wounded. Here’s my gut sense:

    -barring her doing REALLY well in an election at least one serious contendor is going to take a run at her. She has pissed off too many people, and left too many questions about competence, etc.

    – She really has quite a dilemna in front of her now that its looking very likely there will not be a Fall general, and therefore, the by-elcetions will happen. I still think her best shot is a by-election in CCMV. But when she doesn’t win it, then what? Hop to an Ontario riding? But how can she pass on the by-election? Looks very tricky to me.

    – I’m not sure how that knotty problem is resolved. But I think it probably will. And I don’t think she has to do all that well in coming election results to maintain the leadership edge she has.

    – By the same token: probably at least one of the contendors in the unoffical race will be well under way by the time elections(s) do come and go. And May doing just ‘well enough’ is not going to blow an entrnched contendor off track.

    And then AFTER the elections are over, the narratives will start coming out into the full light about how the GPC has fared internally, spending and staffing issues, how all this has impacted in elections, etc.

    May has already provided all the material required for that kind of contendor narratives. And nothing but a huge [and unlikely] jump in GPC voter support is going to stop that.

  11. During the last contest there was an unbiased commitee. There’s also the oversite of Elections Canada, which will make the contestants more cautious. For what it’s worth.

  12. I’d be surprised if there weren’t an election before the by-elections. Either way there will definitely be a race, although if Elizabeth manages to get elected, she will easily win the Leadership. The by-election/general election dilemma for Elizabeth will be crystalized pretty soon, so lets see which nettle gets grasped there.
    I don’t think that anything short of a win will deflect many people. If somebody else wins a seat, then that person will be well placed to lead the Party.
    There’s too many variables to call it now. All i can say is that there will be a race, and that there is strong potential for a succesful challenge.

  13. Don’t think so.

    We won’t know which comes first until it becomes known or obvious that we will or will not have a Fall election. If no Fall election, then delaying the by-elections any further than Novemeber becomes something Harper could only technically do. Its not politically feasible.

    I’m among the many who think a Fall does not look to be in the cards. But even if thats true, I don’t think the deal between Harper and the Bloc that would end the possibility will come until the Fall. Until then May can sit on the fence, and may find that the best position for her.

    I’m agreed that it now looks like there will be a race for the leadership.

    Nasty as the last one may have been, it was still a more sedate affair than this stands to be. Good thing you at least have the precedent of a committee to oversee, but this one will be more challenging and ‘unbiased’ is not sufficient. They need a very strong mandate.

  14. GPO’s budget last year was $105K, compared to at least $2.5M spent by GPC. A 25X difference. But GPO out-performed GPC in capturing votes in ON. Go figure.

    Adriane Carr has had three years to develop a profile independent of EM. It hasn’t happened. AC is EM warmed-over. Not interested.

    One half of 2009 GPC membership is in ON – this will be the battleground. EM won the 2006 leadership convention by a margin of 2,000 to 1,000 votes. There are 5500 votes in Ontario – even before new members are signed up.

    In the same way as the LPC had to dump Dion in order to revitalize itself, the GPC must elect a new leader in 2010. People who are working towards that are not going to spend a lot of time blogging about it.

  15. This active Green will probably drop his involvement if Frank becomes GPC leader, especially if that means some of his coterie becoming influential. Comments above seem to confirm my perception that GPO’s kind of been peopled by some GPC refugees. I did not come to renewed Green political activity (was there in ’83) via Elizabeth (with whom I even had a non-political connexion from the earlier 80s), and I voted for David after much consideration. But these past few years of involvement, some pretty up close, if not often face to face, makes very clear to me that Elizabeth has no equal whatsoever among stated possible replacements. Political hangers-on for sheer attraction to politics at least as much as to fundamental “green” thinking & acting, the kind of thought & action people such as Eliz. & myself have been about for some thirty years, the influence of purer politicoes, in my not-so-unlearned opinion, actually detracts from advancing public green causes. I share others’ opinion about certain inadequacies mentioned, but the culture of the past few years under Frank among Ontario Greens has been unpleasant to witness. Were it not so, I myself could have found myself regularly at Queen’s Park giving the media something interesting to turn to, incisively & competently commenting & critiquing. But I could not stomach increasing participation given the party culture. If that is the culture that threatens transference to GPC, good bye from me.

  16. If its possible without people making pitches, anyone think they can make a balanced assessment of how much ‘negative baggage’ DeJong and Carr carry around.

    IE, without regard to whether one thinks the complaints have substance, just a rough and fair minded assesment of how many ‘motivated critics’ DeJong and Carr have.

    We know May has plenty, now we know the substance of the knocks against DeJong at least one person holds. Again, leaving aside the substance of complaints against… anyone care to make an assessment?

    On the other hand, that may not be possible without stirring up a discussion that is inherently unresolvable.

    Its worth noting that a certain level of deep displeasure is guaranteed in the cases of May and DeJong. Any Leader is going to leave at lest some of that in their wake. [And that may be true of Carr as well from having been the BC leader.]

  17. Thanks for the comments Darryl, and Ken.
    I guess, w.r.t. Frank DeJong, he has been around for ever and a day. The comments about coterie’s are interesting, because the coterie’s have changed, but Frank remained. Frank has made his share of enemies over the years, but it’s seldom Frank that is the main target of opprobrium. Generally it’s that he allowed, aided, or abetted. I can think of several examples where somebody else did his dirty work, leaving Frank in the clear. In this respect he’s been perhaps effective at NOT stirring visceral antipathy. He has many detractors, but it’s not often you hear of somebody hating Frank’s guts.
    Adrian Carr has fewer detractors, that I know of. What criticism I have heard is about all the money she had to play with, for an abysmal result in the last general election. She is very very close(politically) to Elizabeth, which will count against her with some. You will need to talk with some BC Greens to find out just how much animosity there is in BC towards her. I would have to say that she benefits from name recognition in Ontario, and hasn’t really been associated with anything positive or negative yet (As far as the membership is concerned).
    I think that it takes a stint as leader to really develop widespread antipathy in the Green Party of Canada. Every leader has it. The fact is that the leader will be the lightning rod, because that’s the way we treat the office. The next leader, whosoever it may be would be well advised to really think through how to deploy their influence to minimise the nastiness. It’s another political skill that we greens have not developed well. Accomodation.

  18. What about the WHEN question?

    I’ve always been saying Fall, but I heard that constitutionally it could be any time in the year.

    It would be to May’s advantage to have it as early as possible. I don’t think she has to do well in the next election to win a leadership race, but before the election is still best for her.

    For that matter, there is the question of where. I would think holding it in Nova Scotia would be too obvious to be approved by Council.

    anybody know when do these questions get raised and negotiated over?

  19. […] race for the national party coming? Jump to Comments The Not an official Green party site has a post about the start of politicking for the leadership of the Green Party. What Elizabeth May […]

  20. When the leadership race question?

    In light of the greater uncertainty when we will have a general election.

    I rate the likelihood of a Fall election considerably less than 50%.

    If there is no Fall election, it is hard to guess when it will be. Spring 2010 will be a budget and the aftermath glow of the Olympics- not auspicious times for opposition parties to trigger an election. The economy would have to have really tanked and stayed there.

    Point being, it could be anytime. But a Leadership convention has to be set at least six months in advance.

    Guesses how this gets determined?

    I had the earlier unanswered question about process of deciding. That could be included. but at bottom, this is a question simply of what makes sense.

  21. The leadership race is already on. The formal race will start about this time next year. That is based upon the last race, but I don’t think anybody will be argueing about the dates. I’m sure that council will strike a committee, and there’ll probably be a reasonably neutral set of rules. I’ll be interested in spending limits, and fundraising terms.
    My total guess is that the main event will be Frank DeJong against Adrian Carr. I frankly don’t have a clue whether EMay will be running. She seems a little dissatisfied lately. Adrian has a great bonus as she is touring 100 EDA’s on a training tour, which will introduce her to lots of people. She did a fair job of recruiting for Elizabeth in the last Leadership race. The process, and minutae won’t matter so much as organization.

  22. Good answer to my earlier question BGB, which was about decision making and process around what are essentialy fairness/neutrality issues.

    The question I just asked is more about the wild card of when a general election comes. You are right that the race is effectively on and the pace will increase regardless of the formailities. But there still has to be a fixed vote date [or one tentatively set ? with a decision process for looking at pushing it back if necessary?].

    Fairness/neutrality issues would play in there too, but it isn’t primarily a fairness question.

    I will make a suggestion just to have something concrete to discuss.

    A mid or late summer leadership vote is the safest by far for not falling during an election. As good a set-up as possible if a general election turns out to be Fall or later. With an advance agreement that a Spring writ automaticaly bumps the leadership vote to a date fixed in October or November? [Lots of time after the Spring general election bringing as close as possible to a level playing field between those who do or do not have to wage a campaign in the election.]

  23. This may be premature since Frank DeJong is presumably a very long way off anything that looks any more like an announcement of intent.

    But would he be expected to offer as a candidate somewhere?

    Or, expected as long as there is a good place for him to run?

    Guelph, if May either publicly or quietly makes it clear she does not want to run there?

    Any other strong Green vote share ridings that are or could be open?

  24. I am not a big fan of constitutional parseing, especially as there is a fair bit of looking the other way when the constitution is inconvenient. There might be a stipulated date in there somewhere. I wish I could answer you better, but I would rather have my fingernails torn out one at a time than actually re-read the constitution!
    I refreshed my memory with a trip to wikipedia regarding the last race.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Green_Party_of_Canada_leadership_convention,_2006

    We will probably be looking at a late August vote, the biggest wild card will be the location of the convention. How much do you want to bet that it will be in BC? 2006- Ottawa, This year in Nova Scotia, next year the west coast. The fact that both Elizabeth, and Adrian have substantial support out there of course doesn’t factor into the decison now, does it?
    Convention attendees aren’t that important though, it’ll be the mail-in ballots. I was very surprised in the last race that only 1/3 of the membership voted. Recruiting and GOTV will rule, not convention location.

  25. I could see Frank running in a number of different places. Perhaps one of the stronger Toronto ridings. He should maybe consider travelling to Alberta to run in Calgary somewhere. He could spend the pre and post writ on a membership drive, and make himself the front runner.

  26. I personally doubt that David Chernushenko will be running for the federal leadership anytime soon; he’s too smart to take that risk given the rather well -fitting opening for him at the provincial level. David has the connections to easily win over the current Ontario membership, and I think his policies are closest to those which have fueled the provincial party’s success in the past few years.
    As for Frank, I think it’s anyone’s guess whether he will seek the federal leadership. If he does then I think he will have mountains to climb in order to end up on top. Although his policy package is appealing to many, I have doubts about his ability to effectively articulate it on the national stage.

    • Well said anon. I hadn’t even thought about David provincially. I kind of thought he’d drifted away, with maybe a municipal run, or other interests moving to the forefront.
      As far as Frank goes, if Elizabeth May is running again, he has a mountain to climb. If not, then it’s a toss up between him and Adrian. I might even favour Franks odds over Adrian, given that 60% of the GPC membership is in Ontario. I would see Frank’s strength being EDA building rather than the electoral WOW! which he doesn’t have. I must confess that I would like to see a more rounded team in Ottawa, and i don’t see how Adrian could win over enough support running as the Elizabeth Lite candidate.

  27. […] Routledge, a Green blogger, is peeved at May. So is ReportonGreens. And background folks, Greens from the provincial parties, and other guys are readying to run for the leadership. Not An Official Green Party Site smacks May […]

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