Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The parameters

The NDP leadership selection rules were canvassed by Kady O'Malley yesterday:
...aside from ensuring that every single active, card-carrying member of the party has the right to cast a ballot, and that the winner is eventually chosen with no less than 50% plus one support, the parameters are bogglingly wide.

For instance, as we discovered earlier today, contrary to media reports that ran uncontested by the party over the last week, there is no guarantee that 25 percent of the total ballots will be reserved for 'affiliate members,' as was the case in 2003; that, it turns out, was a provision implemented by the council at the time, and may not be replicated this time around, but could instead be reduced -- or, for that matter, raised -- or eliminated entirely.
The ubiquitous Brian Topp added to the developing picture:
“At a meeting of our party's officers last week, party secretary-treasurer Rebecca Blaikie agreed to take the lead in a review of the party's rules, regulations and precedents as they apply to this matter,” Mr. Topp said. “In due course she'll be making appropriate recommendations to our executive committee and federal council.”
Le Devoir notes that leadership candidates are waiting to find out what the rules are before making their decisions:
Brian Topp est donc le premier à manifester assez clairement ses intentions. Plusieurs autres noms circulent: Thomas Mulcair (qui est resté muet hier), les députés Peggy Nash, Peter Julian, Joe Comartin, Megan Leslie et Paul Dewar, ou encore Anne McGrath (chef de cabinet de M. Layton).

Nouvelles règles

Avant d'annoncer leurs intentions, plusieurs attendent que soient connues les règles régissant la course au leadership.
Waiting to find out about that 25% precedent, I take it. Which seems to be a pretty big matzoh ball hanging out there and could alter the shape of the race.

All very interesting. Liberals have been strenuously criticized for their rules in leadership races or the amending of their rules, etc. Turns out it might be way easier to have very few rules to begin with then make them up for each contest without the constraints of written rules. Who knew.