Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Quick Quiz: Rebuilding the Party

Rebuilding the Liberal party is going to take:

A) 6-12 months, if we push it and find the right leader.
B) 2-4 years, to make sure we are ready to regain power after the next election
C) 8-1O years, if we're lucky.

I think part of the cause of the party's recent setback has been too many people choosing A) or B) after the last couple of election losses.

The result? Option C) may be the new default.

One aspect of this that I think has been missed all around is that it takes time for leaders to make an impression, and more than just a couple years for Canadians to get to know them and warm up to them. Like it or not, we have to resolve to stick with our next leader for a long haul, perhaps even after an election loss (*gasp!*).

Another factor in the NDP and Conservatives success is that their respective leaders have been around long enough for people, average voters who aren't hard wired into politics, to get to know them and get comfortable with them. Unfortunately, Stephane Dion and Michael Ignatieff were never given this opportunity, so we'll never know how well they could have eventually done. We shouldn't make this mistake again, tempting as it is to try to find someone who will resonate with voters and enjoy a greater immediate success (has this ever happened?)