Dave Krayden from the Canadian Centre for Policy Studies opines:
Do you remember Ernie Eves? Yes, he was that Red Tory who helped destroy what Mike Harris had produced over two terms of true conservative government in Ontario. He inherited the Mike Harris file and promptly reduced it back again to Liberal Lite, thinking that conservatism could never win in Ontario despite the overwhelming evidence of the last decade that had allowed him to remain in government. You lost, Ernie and you lost because you refused to stand for conservative principles. Now you are at again.
Why are you trying to destroy the campaigns of Jack MacLaren and Randy Hillier in my backyard? You just cannot abide the fact that a democratically elected nomination rejected your favourite candidate and nominated a real conservative. Jack and Randy are probably two of the only true conservatives on the block this autumn. Don’t take that happiness away from me. Yes, I know you are upset that the democratic process prevailed in the nomination of Jack MacLaren. I know that the Progressive Conservative establishment wanted Norm Sterling to win because he was more in keeping with the Red Toryism and the status quo of this party. But guess what? The people have taken the party back. They are in control. For a change. Get used to it.
Which brings me to Tim Hudak. Mr. Hudak you are not gong to win this campaign by default. You will not find electoral success by pretending that you are just as liberal as the opponents. You will not win by refusing to stand as a principled conservative.
You know, I don't know what more Tim Hudak could do to prove his "Principled Conservatism" bonafides short of personally hurling a brick through the window of an East Indian restaurant.
And maybe his newly inflamed rhetoric is having its intended effect.
Do you remember Ernie Eves? Yes, he was that Red Tory who helped destroy what Mike Harris had produced over two terms of true conservative government in Ontario. He inherited the Mike Harris file and promptly reduced it back again to Liberal Lite, thinking that conservatism could never win in Ontario despite the overwhelming evidence of the last decade that had allowed him to remain in government.
There was a good reason to try and moderate the "Common Sense" revolution. Before Mike Harris stepped down, he was trailing Dalton McGuinty's Liberals (33% to 53%). As for Eves, during the 2003 election, he ran on a hard-right platform. Eves had an upswing with the way he managed the 2003 blackout. If he'd shown a more moderate path, it's possible that he could have won.
The funny thing, even the federal Conservative party knows that they have to tone it down.
Your Toronto Sun link is broken.
How quickly the Tea Tories try to rewrite history (nothing new there).
Eves was the fall guy for Walkerton. Lots of people who voted for Harris decided that seven dead and thousands sick was too high a price to pay for Harris style "deregulation".
In the GTA, each month millions receive a bill from some foreign company who can charge whatever it wants for you to drive on its highway 407, and they can take your licence plate renewal away if you dare to disagree with their outrageous business practices. The Harris Highway will continue to drive nails into the coffin of the Chainsaw Mike regime.
For these two reasons, Chaingang Tim is toast.
I think Hudak could have won.
But he's been a horrible campaigner, and weak at enforcing party discipline.
John Tory, a moderate, would have had more appeal, and likely would have beaten McGuinty. If the PCs lose, they need to work at minimizing the influence of the hard right elements in their party.
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