Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Gerard Kennedy - burnt too bright?

There's been some discussion in my comments section about Brison's chances vis-a-vis Kennedy's. To expound, some (like myself) think he has as good a chance as Kennedy of winning; others think Kennedy has a much better chance.

I don't know about that, though. Kennedy runs the risk of being the victim of high expectations; some are wondering exactly what that initial enthusiasm for him was all about, including me. He's still a good candidate, but to be frank he's not even in my top 5. (Which consists of Brison, Dion, Ignatieff, Rae and Hall-Findlay, not necessarily in that order.)

As a result of this, however, Kennedy does have a disadvantage that a candidate like Brison (or Dryden or Dion) doesn't have - people have very high expectations of Kennedy, and whenever he fails to meet them, it will be considered a negative; likewise, when he meets them, it will be par for the course. On the other hand, Brison, Dion and Dryden, have much more room to work, and can easily exceed expectations, as I felt both Dion and Dryden (but especially Dion) did this weekend. In fact, Dion's placement in my top 5 is entirely because of what I saw in the debate.

(As for Brison, I felt that while he did not exceed, he met my expectations, but I'm kind of biased, and I have been following him since his days as a Progressive Conservative, so my expectations are fairly high to begin with.)

Kennedy-backers better hope that their guy starts out-performing the big boys (Iggy, namely, but also Rae, and now Dion) if they want him to make it to the final ballot.

22 Comments:

At 6/13/2006 3:13 PM, Blogger Kyle Carruthers said...

Another "Gerard is all hype" blog.

I dont really see how Gerard has failed to live up to anyone's expectations. Can you actually provide any examples of that?

At the beginning of the campaign people said: "Hey! Here is a guy who has great experience, great ideas, little baggage, and a common touch". No one ever said he would be perfect in absolutely every respect.

I think the idea that Gerard has "failed to meet expectations" is a blogger myth that has been repeated so often that people repeat it without offering any proof of its truthfullness.

PS How anyone could put Iggy ahead of Gerard is beyone me. Then again you are a liberal interventist. Hey if you want your marriage rights stripped by a Harper majority by all means vote for Iggy. He WILL lose a general election. Mark my words.

 
At 6/13/2006 3:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love Scott Brison, but I think the blackberry thing, and Hall Findlay's NY Times comment have probably curtailed his chances this time around. Maybe next time.

I agree with your points on Kennedy and Dion.

Kennedy was expected to wipe the floor with guys like Dion and Dryden, but they both beat him in this debate.

Dion's debate performance was not only good - but his policy stuff is really viable and well thought out. Plus his confidence and energy was infectious.

After the debate I've moved to the Dion camp, I hope he can pull this off.

 
At 6/13/2006 3:29 PM, Blogger Dan McKenzie said...

""Kennedy, 45, and the freshest federal face, has been an impressive cabinet minister in McGuinty's Ontario government. He has also lived in Manitoba and Alberta. At 22, he established Canada's first-ever food bank, in Edmonton. During the debate he proved the most intense and aggressive debater."

-Vancouver Sun, June 13, 2006

Gerard's been doing great since a little bit of a rocky start to the campaign. I didn't hear anyone in the media say that he disapointed during the debate.

 
At 6/13/2006 3:41 PM, Blogger Kyle Carruthers said...

Kennedy was expected to wipe the floor with guys like Dion and Dryden, but they both beat him in this debate.

I like Stefan Dion and Ken Dryden, but still think Kennedy is a better candidate and beat both of them in the debate.

 
At 6/13/2006 3:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kyle, you're drinking your own bathwater a bit there.

He did fine, but not better than Dryden or Dion. He should be winning these things - but he is floating anonymously.

 
At 6/13/2006 4:04 PM, Blogger Steve said...

Kyle it is not all hype. He was said to be fluently bilingual, and apparently is not. He was so hyped up it was RIDICULOUSLY asserted that becase he was born in the west, he would instantly have credibility with the west, and that his wife being from the East Coast somehow carried that area. It was said he had great, bright ideas. He has not said any of them aside from on immigration, in which he has said exactly what Ignatieff has said despite Kennedy supporters trying to paint them as opposities.

Your ending comment is hillarious. The hypocrisy of Kennedy backers saying vote for this guy even thoguh he won't win because ideas are what matters we're the true beleivers, but if you can attack someone else based on realpolitik go right ahead? As if Ignatieff has somethign to do with Harper in that way. So if you care about ideas you should be pro-Kennedy but if you care about someone else's ideas all that matters is winning eh? I don't see how Kennedy, a guy with no national profile, is such a lock to win a general election. I dont' think Ignatieff is either, but what's the huge difference.

 
At 6/13/2006 4:04 PM, Blogger foottothefire said...

He's pacin' himself fellas. Just pacin' himself - thorougbred like.

 
At 6/13/2006 4:22 PM, Blogger Clear Grit said...

Hey now Kyle, I understand that we disagree on this, but there's really no reason, need, or justification to appeal to my sexual orientation on this one. (Plus it's just not very classy to do so.) I find that rather offensive, actually. I assure you, I concern myself with the question of my own rights quite a bit, thank you very much.

Besides, you know full well that I'm not voting for Iggy; I'm supporting Brison. And if I were to change my mind, my second choice is Dion.

I am saying, though, that objectively, in terms of performance, I think Iggy presents himself better than Kennedy, and he's definitely the current front-runner; hence my comment that if Kennedy wants to win, he's going to have to beat Iggy.

Fact is, I do think Kennedy was hyped at the beginning of the campaign, and granted he is a great candidate, but the talk of a lot of his backers (at least in my memory) was almost messianic.

 
At 6/13/2006 4:22 PM, Blogger Kyle Carruthers said...

He was said to be fluently bilingual, and apparently is not.

Kennedy's French is not perfect but the Globe and Mail confirmed that he is bilingual and has great room to improve.

it was RIDICULOUSLY asserted that becase he was born in the west, he would instantly have credibility with the west

He wasnt just born in the west. He worked in the west, went to school in the west. That Kennedy sells in the west is evidenced by his strength in Saskatchewan, Alberta and BC.

He has not said any of them aside from on immigration, in which he has said exactly what Ignatieff has said despite Kennedy supporters trying to paint them as opposities.

Then you arent listening. Maybe you should visit his site and read some of his speeches.

Your ending comment is hillarious. The hypocrisy of Kennedy backers saying vote for this guy even thoguh he won't win because ideas are what matters we're the true beleivers, but if you can attack someone else based on realpolitik go right ahead?

I support Kenned both because he is the most electable and is the best for the job.

I don't see how Kennedy, a guy with no national profile, is such a lock to win a general election. I dont' think Ignatieff is either, but what's the huge difference.

A few years ago nobody knew who Stephen Harper was. Now he is the Prime MInister. National profile is meaningless. Once whoever becomes leader their profile will increase exponentially.

Ignatieff's problem is that his national profile will do nothing for him when ordinary people--soft Liberals--hear that he hasnt lived in the country for 25 years and supports the Iraq War. I know countless people who voted for us in the last election who have explicitly told me that they will not vote Liberal if Ignatieff is leader.

That is the difference between Kennedy and Ignatieff. I doubt many people will state categorically that they wont vote for Kennedy because of his lack of a degree, and imperfect French.

 
At 6/13/2006 4:22 PM, Anonymous David said...

My bet is Brison doesn't even make the convention - he has little to no support outside of NS and he's spending a ton of cash on staff.

I think Dion and Kennedy clearly took the debate on Saturday (Dryden's French was SOOOO bad). I think Dion and Gerard are lining up nicely as the "anybody but Iggy" candidate. My bet is on Gerard but it could still go either way.

 
At 6/13/2006 4:30 PM, Blogger Kyle Carruthers said...

BG,

My apologies, but in all fairness you bring it into many political discussions yourself so its obviously an important issue for you. If you are that offended, it is your blog and you have the power to delete comments. The point is the gravity of the decision we are in the process of making. If we dont pick the right guy, we stand to lose a lot of what we value.

Im not going to sit here and tell you that Kennedy is the only legitimate candidate and the only person who could win--although I think he is miles ahead of the rest. All I am saying is that I am quite concerned that people are not really putting their mind to the question of electability. The problem with us Liberals is that we are all too educated, and spend far too much time in the ivory towers. My experience in the real world has been that many people are downright offended by the idea that we might pick a candidate who didnt pay taxes with them all those year, and didnt stand shoulder to shoulder with them through thick and thin. Liberals are ignoring that fact.

 
At 6/13/2006 4:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Last poster has it right.

Kennedy and Dion were the debate winners, hands down.

Ignatieff and Kennedy are not similiar in policy whatsoever. Take a look at their comments on: Afghanistan, healthcare, carbon tax, immigration and so on. Kennedy is definitely the progressive leader. Kennedy's French was pretty good in the debate and will only get better.

I saw the debate in person and Dryden's French was painfully bad, something TV viewers would have missed with the translator talking over his voice.

There is just no comparision between Kennedy and Brison. Kennedy is top 3 and Brison is not.

 
At 6/13/2006 4:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think you should focus your worries on your own candidate, Brison, who outside of NS, does not even have a viable campaign. Trying to bash Kennedy, who has a solid national campaign, is not going to win more support for Brison. Nice try.

 
At 6/13/2006 4:42 PM, Blogger indievoter said...

Speculation is a sucker's game. It ain't over til it's over. Plus we have a few more debates to go so like a hockey series the field is still wide open for anyone to score. That New York Times remark Brison made laid a big stink bomb with reformed lefties like me. But gun to my head, I prefer Brison over Icky by far.

 
At 6/13/2006 4:50 PM, Blogger Clear Grit said...

Geez, these anonymous Kennedy-backers are as bad as the anonymous Tories who drive-by attack me here!

The point of this post was neither to build support for Brison, nor was it to attack Kennedy. I am simply recording my observations; "calling it as I see it," to coin a phrase. Of course I could be completely out to lunch - that's why we have more than one blog here on this intarweb.

This leadership race should not be so divisive; there's no need to attack each other.

Kyle; I wouldn't delete your comments over something like that, and I understand that you meant no offence. In fairness, yes, I do bring it up myself; but usually in the context of discussion regarding an issue where it's immediately relevant.

I do think electability is important. And I am nervous about Iggy's electability, particularly on the left of the party. He's been unfairly tarred as "right-wing" and like it or not, that reputation could follow him into an election, and I'm quite worried about that. Just like Bob Rae has been unfairly tarred by his years as Ontario premier, which given the global recession occurring at the time, saw him blamed for a lot that wasn't his fault.

 
At 6/13/2006 5:05 PM, Anonymous imspartacus said...

Having met Brison in person I was fairly interested in seeing how he performed in the 11-ring circus atmosphere. I thought he did well, but that line about the NYTimes (sure wish i had prepped him by twisting that Hall-Findlay line out) kind of fell flat. Ignatieff is the one I think played under his capabilities and perhaps its his lack of political experience. Don't know if he'll be comfortable as the 'front-runner'. Rae, who I support, did very well in separating himself with his experience and his view on Afghanistan (however, i'm not 100% with him in this;^() Kennedy I thought did very well, I don't know if its his speaking style or telegenetics, because as some have mentioned, I don't recall much of what he said but left feeling good about him. Dion was the standout, in my mind. He brought something few said he had -- cool, energetic wit -- and tossed in much of the policy. I bet he climbed up a lot of people's lists. Dryden -- he's another positive but has so much further to go and I think because of $ is one of the big names likely to drop out before Nov...

 
At 6/13/2006 9:28 PM, Blogger Riley Hennessey said...

If Brison, a man I think should be in prison right now for the whole thing about that... ya know... INSIDER TRADING THING!

Cripes we put dear ol' Martha behind bars for less!

Also I think Brison's been an idiot since day one. Look up the stuff he said about the Chretien and Martin government before he turned his tail and tell me if he's the guy we want to lead our legacy... RIGHT!

Brison has no more of a shot at Liberal leader than Jack Layton does at being Prime Minister.

 
At 6/13/2006 9:31 PM, Anonymous JB in Quebec said...

Kennedy is so dead in Quebec that he can't possibly be considered a top contender in this race.

He travelled through Quebec last week with an aide. In Trois Riveire 3 people came to see him. In Quebec City, Senator Dennis Dawson tried to turn out a crowd for him and only 8 people shoed. Dawson ordered food and drink for 60 people and now there is a big fight over the bill.

Kennedy is going nowhere.

 
At 6/13/2006 10:57 PM, Blogger calgarygrit said...

I don't see why Brison and Kennedy supporters are locking heads. Both are very young impressive men with bright futures in the party. Win or lose, both will be playing key roles in the Liberal Party over the next decade and represent the kind of generational change the party needs.

 
At 6/14/2006 4:32 PM, Blogger Penny said...

Hennessy would probably like to see all the idiot Liberal candidates in jail....

But, while I hesitate to hype my own blog - yeah, right! - there's a great article over there about the Brison Blackberry.

Long story short, the RCMP looked into it, and there was no story about Scott. Now, as for McCallum Goodale and few un-named civil servants....I'm not so sure.

 
At 6/14/2006 11:54 PM, Blogger Riley Hennessey said...

Penny,


I'd like to see Ignatieff win because he's the only one with a head on his shoulders who isn't out to lunch. I'd prefer if he came out with some real policy, but he's still far and above the rest of the candidates. I feel like our party is headed for the NDP with idiots like Rae, Brison and Bennett.

As to your blog post I didn't find it overly enlightening and it still didn't quell critism of Brison who by ALL accounts, tipped off his friends about the new deal.

Gimme a break, telling your friends about a government plan is INSIDER TRADING... end of story,

 
At 6/16/2006 11:22 PM, Anonymous GayandRight said...

The Liberals will not select Ignatieff because it will neuter any criticism of Harper's support for the Iraq War.

Imagine - what will the Liberals have to work with in that case? Gay marriage will be settled, and the Iraq War issue will be a non-starter. What are they going to do? Dredge up abortion again? Or a new plan for state-subsidized unionized kiddie warehouses known euphemistically as "national childcare"? Yah that'll work. The Conservatives will just pull out a clip of Carolyn Bennett saying on national TV that if parents are allowed to raise their kids at home, then they'll all turn out as criminals (yes, she actually said that).

Liberals thrive on smearing their opponents with hot-button issues, and Iraq is one of the few tools they have left. Ignatieff has no hope.

 

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