When push came to shove, New Democrat leader Carole James may once again have pushed too hard. Dissent against her has been on the rise ever since she expelled Cariboo North MLA Bob Simpson from caucus. That prompted Columbia River-Revelstoke MLA Norm Macdonald to resign as caucus chair. Then, on Friday, Ms. James overreacted again by suggesting party dissidents were being self-centred. This, after Kootenay West MLA Katrine Conroy resigned as caucus whip.
Think about it. Mr. Simpson was expelled after mildly criticizing Ms. James's speech to the Union of British Columbia Municipalities annual general meeting. And, for her own part, Ms. Conroy didn't say a bad word about Ms. James on her way out the door. In fact, she didn't say much at all - to the consternation of the press.
In fairness, such actions may speak louder than words. And the 13 caucus members who appear off-side with Ms. James may be bad mouthing her privately. But they've never done so in front of a row of television cameras. So the fact Ms. James did may make it more difficult for her to pull them back insider her tent - or perhaps not.
After all, as of yesterday, The Vancouver Sun's Vaughn Palmer was reporting Robin Austin and Guy Gentner are now back in line.