Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Tory leadership selection politics, an ongoing saga

Leadership selection rules are making a bit of a splash on the Conservative scene at the moment. Two MPs, Reid and Kenney, are said to be pushing for a rule change in the leadership selection process that would allot greater voting power to the big riding associations with more members, i.e., the western ridings. On the other side of the argument are Peter MacKay and now Hugh Segal voicing his support, both seeking to maintain the status quo and an equal regime among the associations across the country that won't discriminate against the smaller sized associations.

It is the beginning of a majority mandate for Harper and so it seems funny to have this rise to the fore now. Particularly when many are speaking of his tenure as reaching possibly beyond this majority mandate into a second given the powers accruing to him as PM and the political landscape he presides over. So does someone know something we don't? Or is this a "just in case" rule change being undertaken in order to get it out of the way for whenever that leadership race comes? They did try to change these leadership selection rules in a similar manner at their November '08 convention and the effort failed then. So this just may be the regular kick at the can as convention time rolls around. One of these tries it just might pass. It's interesting that it seems to be an issue with staying power, showing how the western Reformers still butt heads with the eastern Progressive Conservative types.

How this one gets resolved at the upcoming June convention will likely be a function of whether you-know-who wants it to pass. If it did pass, it would possibly signal the start of something leadership wise, very early rumblings, quiet efforts and possibly a blessing in the general direction of a successor from the larger riding power base. If not, it's likely a signal everyone should gird themselves for a very long haul with you-know-who.

By the way, combing through the blog archives, found this reminder on how open this convention is likely to be to the media who could relate how such issues are playing among the Conservative folk. Not. Very.