Thoughts on the recently concluded Ontario PC leadership race:
1. Congratulations to our new leader and future premier Doug Ford, who I saw and heard speak here in St. Catharines at the Holiday Inn on Thursday evening as he was wrapping up his campaign tour. The more I’ve seen of him, the more I like and I certainly don’t regret marking him as #1 on my ballot. As he said, come June, the party’s over with the taxpayers’ money.
1a. When shaking my hand as he was making his way up to the podium, Ford noticed and liked my new “Make Speech Free Again” cap, which I recently acquired from the Gab store.
1b. I now have more followers on Gab than I do on the dying bird, a platform I’ve been on for several years longer.
2. Though I did not mark her as #1, I was very impressed by Tanya Granic Allen and I suspect she has a bright future ahead of her under a future government led by Ford.
3. Despite having the big name, being endorsed by so many federal and provincial caucus members and getting a disproportionate amount of favorable media coverage, Caroline Mulroney’s showing can only be described as a major flop, given that she barely finished ahead of Granic Allen, a virtual unknown before the start of the campaign. Not only did she show poorly overall, but she didn’t even win in the riding she’ll be running in.
4. To her credit, Mulroney was out on knocking on doors and rallying under the new leader the next day after her crushing defeat, which is more than I can say for Christine Elliott. The presumed frontrunner who expected to win, Elliott kept preaching unity as the campaign heated up in the final days leading up to the voting deadline, but after suffering her third defeat in as many tries at the leadership, she instead went home and sulked. Just like she did when she lost to Patrick Brown in 2015. Once she was finished moping, she managed to pull herself together enough to offer her public support for Ford, but her childish, almost Hillary-like behavior made me even more pleased that Ford won.
5. Ford’s victory certainly represents a stinging rejection of Patrick Brown’s Liberal-lite policies. As I’ve heard it said, there’s no point in having a conservative party if they’re not conservative.
6. It is notable that more votes were cast in Kathleen Wynne’s riding of Don Valley West than in any other in the province. As Brown once said, there are no safe Liberal seats.
7. Having secured a good leader, St. Catharines needs a candidate to run against the ghost of Jim Bradley. One who is a real conservative and not a small-l liberal. As Ford said, we don’t need liberals of a different banner. None of the current crop of so-called conservative councilors who seemingly can’t find the intestinal fortitude to say no to our ultra-Liberal mayor’s virtue signaling need apply.
8. With all the voting taking place online, why on Earth did it take so long for the results to be tabulated? Heck, I could have put together a database and written a few queries and reports from scratch in the time it took them to comb through the data.