Andrew Coyne on Peter MacKay’s departure from politics


in Canada, Politics, Rants

His career at the top of Canadian politics tells us more about the state of Canadian politics than anything else. That such a palpable cipher could have remained in high office for nearly a decade is a testament to many things: the thinness of the Tory front bench, the decline of cabinet, the prime minister’s cynicism, the media’s readiness to go along with the joke. The one thing it does not signify is his importance. He had all of the titles, but little influence, and less achievement.

Hopefully this is a case where the most obvious interpretation is correct: senior Harper Conservatives expect to lose the next election, and are distancing themselves from the defeat in advance. Of course, we shouldn’t underestimate the power of the Liberals and NDP to ruin their own chances.

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. June 19, 2015 at 4:41 pm

James Moore, Conservative cabinet minister, leaving politics for family

Tory MP said balancing responsibilities as a father and MP is ‘very challenging’

. June 30, 2015 at 11:08 am

It’s not just Cabinet ministers jumping ship: Conservative exodus ahead of election largest in 20 years

Stephen Harper is losing incumbent lawmakers at one of the highest rates in decades, and history suggests that weighs heavily on the Canadian Prime Minister’s chances of winning another term in power later this year.

Of 166 Conservatives elected to the House of Commons during Harper’s first majority in 2011, at least 46 are not running for the party this fall. It’s the third-highest dropout rate since the Second World War and the highest since 1993, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Polls show a tight three-way race heading into the Oct. 19 election as Harper seeks to become the first Canadian prime minister in more than a century to win a fourth-straight term. However, a high attrition rate correlates to a loss of seats, the data show. Those who have gone through it agree.

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