Keith Beardsley Wants to See A Strong Woman Run for the Conservative Leadership – View From the Hill 010720 #cdnpoli

Keith Beardsley Wants to See  A Strong Woman Run for the Conservative Leadership – View From the Hill 010720 #cdnpoli

The Conservative leadership race is off and running. More like a pegged-legged sailor than a sprinter, but at least they are moving.

The party is carrying a lot of negative baggage from the 2019 campaign. It will have to do a damn good job of persuading Canadians that they represent a modern Conservative view that appeals to all Canadians, including immigrants, millennials, women and those concerned about the environment. For those that think that is an impossible task, look to the U.K. to see a revitalized party.

I love that the convention takes place in Toronto on Toronto’s Pride weekend- a perfect reminder that all Canadians are equal. I bet no one organizing the convention thought about that date!

It will be a fairly quick race for the Conservatives ending on April 27th. Thank goodness, the last one was a huge snore-fest that dragged on month after month.

While the Conservatives earned more votes than the Liberals, a lot of it was concentrated in western Canada. Somehow, they have to penetrate central Canadian cities, Quebec and do better down East. That will be no small task.

The party should be keeping their fingers crossed that viable candidates step forward and that they can articulate policies that reflect the Canada of today, not the 1960’s.

As I write this, there is only one declared candidate- Bryan Broulette, a successful Ottawa businessman and sometime political organizer. Plus, with all of the media leaks happening today, it is pretty safe to assume that Pierre Poilievre will announce his leadership bid today as well.

They are both good people. I know Bryan from his organizing days, and I worked in the leader’s office and PMO when Pierre was one of our key critics and attack dogs. Pierre is also my MP.

Bryan will bring some new, fresh ideas to the table that will help to make the debate interesting. But he has a tough road ahead if he hopes to have any chance of success. The tough part will be to convince party members that while relatively unknown to present party members, he is the real deal who can lead the party back to power. I don’t envy him that task.

Pierre will have to do a bit of a make-over to convince people (voters) that he is more than just a negative pit bull. But he is smart and articulate, and he will be very good in any debates. Pierre’s task will be to convince moderate party members that he represents more than the social conservative base.

So far, no women in the running, that is worrisome. Personally, I would like to see a strong contingent of female candidates step forward. It would broaden the debate and showcase a side of the party that is often ignored by the public.

For now, it is time to sit back and enjoy the ride.




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