Top of Mind - March 28, 2011

What will it mean if Premier Christy Clark isn't able to call an election this year?

An early provincial election would have allowed Ms. Clark to seek a mandate from the electorate while her premiership is still in its honeymoon period. It would have also allowed her avoid running in a by-election and provided an opportunity to add her own supporters to the Liberal caucus. But, as a result of the federal election, it's now less likely a writ will issued in this province before 2012. As such, Ms. Clark will have to get on with the business of governing rather than continuing to play at electoral politics. That will put the premier's stakeholder relations and caucus management skills to the test. And it will force her to add depth to what has hitherto been a comparatively shallow policy agenda. It remains to be seen whether the premier's new administration is up to either task.

The provincial New Democrats want British Columbians to believe Ms. Clark is a copy of Premier Gordon Campbell - attempting to preserve some of the hostility that existed toward her predecessor. Will this attempt succeed?

The New Democrats' effort to define their opponent before she has time to define herself is politically laudable. But it's uncertain if there are enough similarities between Ms. Clark and Mr. Campbell to sustain the argument they're cut from the same cloth (at least at this point in her administration). As such, the New Democrats might have been better advised to pick up where her opponents in the Liberal leadership race left off - characterizing Ms. Clark as a shallow, opportunistic political tourist.

4 Comments

My advice for the BCNDP - define yourselves. Do it now. Or forfeit the next election.

It's also Alise Mills' counsel on Bill Good and Vancouver CBC. No narrative to that ad, just like the one Alise testified about... just negative, negative, negative.

Like Christy Clark's "mean"? Come on... you want mean, let's try the pscyho "victory lap" comment on the Sunday after Christy won the leadership or the inappropriate recall campaigns w/ BCNDP involvement. I could go on.

Not going to help her, will give the BC Conservatives more time to get organized and known

"But it's uncertain if there are enough similarities between Ms. Clark and Mr. Campbell to sustain the argument they're cut from the same cloth"

One important similarity is having Patrick Kinsella's firm grip on the tiller with Gwyn Morgan and others standing at attention to ensure Christy makes no sudden change in direction. More importantly, the same forty plus vassals are pulling on the oars, allowing this unstable ship of state to continue on a steady course to the right.

The similarities between the Campbell and Clark governments will emerge soon enough. They will emerge because the caucus of "yes men" remains unchanged and the Clark cabinet contains many of the key Campbell sycophants like Kevin Falcon and Rich Coleman.

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