St. Paul's the 2nd

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adma

Lord Palmerston wrote:
It is true that the Tories made inroads in the Jewish community in the last federal election, but that was either the worst showing or second worst showing for the Liberals ever, depending on how you measure it and the Liberals lost ground among virtually all groups.  I'm not convinced the big "realignment" has occurred.

Yet Carolyn Bennett actually improved on her overall share in 2008 vs 2006--go figure...

(Yeah, I know, a post-brake-line-slashing "sympathy vote" may have helped, together with a lesser NDP candidate and less high-profile Tory candidate.  Though one significant group Liberals made gains among in Toronto were Peggy Atwood-style urban lefties--thus, surprising results in the Annex, Riverdale, et al)

Lord Palmerston

...very few of whom live in the "gilded ghetto" of Forest Hill and Cedarvale. 

Bookish Agrarian

Lord Palmerston wrote:

Returning to the NDP nomination, I agree with Stuart that the HST focus is a mistake as it feeds into anti-tax sentiment. 

 

Yes the NDP could totally look like it is out of touch with the concerns of average working people by being afriad to mention something that will increase the costs of everything from home heating, rental costs and even funerals.  I mean why would a party dedicated to bettering the lives of average folks want to talk about something so straight forward that shows how full of crap Liberal 'we care' rhetoric is.

Stockholm

I guess if you think its wrong of the NDP to oppose the HST, you must also think it was wrong of the British Labour party to have made such a fuss about Margaret Thatcher's hated "poll tax" in the late 80s. YTou know the tax that was so unpopular that it caused a palace revolt that ousted her from power.

Erik Redburn

boomerbsg wrote:

I know the NDP doesn't stand a snowball's chance in winning the riding but a "star" candidate would have signalled so much more and set the ground work for 2011.

 

I think Stuart Parker could easily be considered a 'star candidate' if intelligence and dedication were considered above name brand recognition.  He did an excellent job building the BC Greens before being ousted by the Tory wing, but maybe BC is too far away from Ontario or maybe this is just the wrong riding for any NDPer.

Lord Palmerston

Erik Redburn wrote:
I think Stuart Parker could easily be considered a 'star candidate' if intelligence and dedication were considered above name brand recognition.

I second that.

boomerbsg

So much for that can do spirit. Stockholm I never said it would be easy but with a new leader comes new supporters. New, engaged and active supporters. Also, nowhere does it say that the "star" would have to quit their job, I seriously doubt Levy has quit hers. Secondly, as to the motivation, even if you know you are going to lose, a glorious loss could do wonders for one's profile later.

Think, as a hypothetical, if Linda McQuaig decided to run for the NDP. Not only would the resulting press garnered from a match-up of pundits, one right the other running for the Tories, be great for the NDP but Linda's profile would be raised as well. Well worth a sure loss.

As opposed to a general election, where local races are lonely affairs, this is a by-election so it's the only game in town. Everybody is going to report on it and if we don't show up they will report that as well.

Stuart you might be a great guy and a star in your own right, but you are going up against veritable supernovae. A well known right wing columnist and a Doctor who works in war zones saving children and he has an Order of Canada thrown in as well.

The moral is: if you want to be taken seriously one has to act like one is serious.

Erik Redburn

Lord Palmerston wrote:

Erik Redburn wrote:
I think Stuart Parker could easily be considered a 'star candidate' if intelligence and dedication were considered above name brand recognition.

I second that.

 

The NDP's lucky to attract candidates like him still, too bad it's such a tough riding.

adma

Well, it's the kind of seat that demands something like a "Gregor Robertson" dynamic within the party.  But still; I wouldn't be *too* surprised if the NDP poses at least a stiff second-place challenge to Levy...

Lord Palmerston

boomerbsg wrote:
Stuart you might be a great guy and a star in your own right, but you are going up against veritable supernovae. A well known right wing columnist and a Doctor who works in war zones saving children and he has an Order of Canada thrown in as well.

The moral is: if you want to be taken seriously one has to act like one is serious.

What patronizing nonsense.

Lard Tunderin Jeezus Lard Tunderin Jeezus's picture

Peter Kent was more apt to be seen as a star candidate, and he lost. Sue-Ann Levy is a laughingstock in comparison, with her constant references to "socialist silly hall" and calls to defund our schools.

As for the doctor, I overheard several people saying he looks twelve years old. One of them was a university student herself, whom I would have thought would relate to a younger candidate.

edited to add:

Holy Cow. Eric Hoskins is 48 or 49 (born in 1960) now that I check. Unlike the ladies I was eavesdropping on, I'd never seen him until I just googled to check him out. (They'd all seen him on the news.) I can see where they got the Doogie Houser reference, but it really doesn't carry much weight under the circumstance.

St. Paul's Prog...

Stuart, while I appreciate your dedication and commitment, I will be supporting Julian Heller at the nomination meeting.

St. Paul's Prog...

I don't think Sue Ann Levy will fly in St. Paul's.  The Tories who have won St. Paul's historically have been Red Tories and she is too negative, too rightwing.

And Eric Hoskins is defintely an impressive candidate for the Liberals, though I will certainly be voting for the NDP candidate.

St. Paul's Prog...

Lard Tunderin Jeezus wrote:
I'm afraid Lord Palmerston is right about that. Unfortunately, Peter Kent was very effective at scaring Lib/NDP swing voters into voting Liberal.

Perhaps that is true, but there are lots of small-"l" liberal Liberal/NDP swing voters in St. Paul's.  There are plenty of reasons for that.  First of all, the NDP aren't seen as contenders in the riding.  And Carolyn Bennett is just about the most progressive Liberal there is.  People who vote for Joe Mihevc in Ward 21 have no trouble voting for her.  When the NDP runs a strong, visible campaign they can do respectably.  But if you run some last-minute low-profile candidate (like in the last federal election), the Liberals will take a lot of soft NDP votes.

Lard Tunderin Jeezus Lard Tunderin Jeezus's picture

Stuart,

All I can say is: Impress us.

Or should I say impress us more, for to some degree, you already have.

From everything I've heard, Julian is the known quantity (who will take it, all else being equal), Bob Frankford is frankly seen as a has-been who's parachuting in for no real reason, and you are the unknown quantity of interest.

Speak well, inspire us, and you might take it. Even if you don't, you'll at least position yourself strongly for the next time out - particularly if you stick around for the campaign. There's likely a federal election coming up, and we'd do well to have a good candidate in the wings.

adma

Actually, apropos the NDP (whomever runs), it may be worth looking at a "Tory-leaning" place such as Cedarvale because it does have NDP friendliness in the recent past--not only through Mihevc's incumbency, but because up to 1995 it was part of the provincial riding of Oakwood, a Liberal/NDP marginal where Tories were the dismal also-rans...

Stuart_Parker

Well, I lost but it was closer than I anticipated. Onward and upward!

Here was the speech that got 31 votes to Julian's 39.

Quote:
Good evening everyone. Today is a good day to be a New Democrat.

            Looking around this room, I can see three or four generations of New Democrats and CCFers gathered today because of a commitment to never abandoning our struggle for justice and equity. I feel proud to look around this room and see the faces of so many activists who don’t wait for government to make change but are out on picket lines fighting for workers’ rights or in our parks and local wilderness engaged in environmental restoration. Today, I want to especially single out the members of the Raging Grannies and others who helped to make the demonstration in solidarity with Penetanguishene environmentalists campaigning against dump 41 into the smashing success it was this afternoon.

            It’s a great day to be a New Democrat because we know that the values of solidarity, compassion and sharing that launched this movement are eternal values, articulated in the earliest texts human beings made. Whether we call the thing for which we strive Zion, the Kingdom, socialism or Mouseland, we share a proud heritage that unites us in heart and in action as we come together to choose our candidate tonight.

            It’s a great day to be a New Democrat because I can feel our movement coming out of a long period at the margins. Those who have kept our party relevant, those who have kept our party active, those who have rebuilt a base that was shattered in 1995 are beginning to see their work come to fruition. Today, after an invigorating leadership race, we have a new, articulate, dynamic leader. Today, a new generation of voters is turning to the NDP as this global economic downturn is making painfully clear who is really on their side.

I am very hopeful today. But hope is often born of crisis. Let us not minimize the challenges our party faces. Every election, the Greens have siphoned more of the progressive vote from our party. If we do nothing more than hold our 15% from the last two elections, there is every chance that it will earn us fourth place, not third this time. We cannot beat Eric Hoskins with an undefended flank – and I believe that my background and experience make me uniquely qualified to reverse the trend of the last few years and move Green votes back to the NDP.

            I am standing here today as one of the people who was inspired by Andrea’s speech at the convention this spring, who felt a renewed enthusiasm for the NDP after her bold declaration that we will no longer check our socialism at the door. This, I thought, is a movement that is once again ready to take on the hard work, not just of fighting the right-wing policies of the Liberals and Conservatives but the hard work of redefining the political discourse in our province.

            For too long, politics in this province has been a debate about who will do the best job of holding the line on taxes, while cutting the alleged “waste, corruption and inefficiency” out of our government. As long as people think elections are just an audition to see who will do the best job of shrinking the public sector while keeping their Harris-era tax rates in place, New Democrats will lose, whether we are elected or not.

            For me, this by-election is part of the process of our movement relearning how to win.

            Winning isn’t just about filling the benches in the legislature with a new generation of NDP MPPs. That is crucially necessary and it will only happen when it is our ideas that are being discussed at water coolers, on street corners and on Twitter.

Too often corporate media trap us into being the defenders of the status quo.

            When we resist health care privatization, we are portrayed as being satisfied with or indifferent to the escalating costs and lengthening waiting lists. When we stand up against massive nuclear plant development, we are painted as defending an antiquated, crumbling electricity grid. When we stand up against the punishing cost increases low-income people will suffer due to the HST, voters are left with the impression that we think the current regressive 8% PST is somehow okay and that our current tax regime deserves to be defended.

            Ironically, we, the progressives, are too often viewed as the only true conservatives. What do I mean by conservative? A conservative is a defender of the status quo, selling a politics of nostalgia for a bygone era. We must remind voters that we are not and have never been satisfied with the status quo.

            As we saw in the United States last fall, people are once again looking for a politics of change. And here in Ontario, we have a ripe opportunity. The Conservatives have just chosen a backward-looking leader seeking to recreate the supposed glory days of Mike Harris. And our current Liberal government is clearly out of gas. It has no new ideas. The plan of delivering a Rae level of services with a Harris level of taxes has been exposed as a fraud.

            Once again, New Democrats can position ourselves as a truly progressive party – a party that will deliver the change people are demanding.

            Retail politics is going to be an important part of this campaign. Voters need to know that an NDP victory is the best way they have of saying “no” to the Harper-McGuinty HST. But they also need to hear how we plan to solve the problem of government revenues being too low. They need to hear a social democratic vision of a fair tax system. The Conservatives have already staked out the turf of anti-tax naysayers. We need to talk about a tax system that targets pollution and overconsumption, that gets the richest among to pay their fair share, that ends the free ride for our wealthiest banks and communications companies.

            Voters need to know that an NDP victory in St. Paul’s is the best way of ensuring that Bombardier starts building our new streetcar fleet next month and construction starts on the TransitCity right-of-way on Eglinton. Exposing Dalton McGuinty’s use of his trained seals on Metrolinx to delay desperately needed transit is only half the battle. We need to show voters our ecologically and socially progressive plan for a twenty-first century transportation grid all across our province. To offer voters an ambitious transportation strategy that recreates a publicly-owned rail system, rather than subsidizing US-owned rail companies with new free track infrastructure and exorbitant rents for using a rail bed that we taxpayers built in the first place.

New Democrats can recapture the public discourse by offering a solution-oriented campaign.

            Will we offend some people by speaking boldly and courageously about new ideas and innovative policies? Yes. I believe we will. Will we scare some voters? Yes. I believe we will. That’s what relevant political parties do. They shake things up. And when they shake things up, they earn the trust and admiration of other voters.

            We have always called ourselves a progressive party. And back in the 70s, we used to mock the Tories’ absurd name, “progressive conservative.” The “forwards backwards party” demonstrated that they had no idea what progressive politics really was. For progressives, the status quo is not an option – it is an illusion. Change is all around us. Standing pat is not an option. Doing what worked last time is not an option.

            Every party in this election will vie to carry the message of change to Queens Park. Eric Hoskins will beg voters to make him the messenger as he bobs and weaves to avoid the McGuinty government record. Sue-Ann Levy will sing her own riff on Tim Robbins’ brilliantly-titled satire, “the times are a’ changin’ back.” Chris Chopik will offer the Greens as a brand new party with new ideas, despite their stunning similarity to the policies that his party has been offering and voters have been rejecting every election for the past quarter century.

            New Democrats can and will speak in favour of real, fundamental change in the political life of Ontario. We will be a voice that is forward-looking and compassionate, a voice that is honest and inspiring. It would be a great honour to be selected by you to speak for a new progressive politics and to represent you as the first-ever NDP MPP for St. Paul’s.

 

Lord Palmerston

That was a great speech, and you certainly made an impression, Stuart.

Stockholm

So now that Julian Heller has been nominated, can anyone tell us about his speech and what sort of a candidate he will be?

From looking at his website, he seems to be somewhat of a pillar of the local community and very strong on educational issues:

http://www.julianheller.ca/

 

PS: I think Stuart Parker would have been a good candidate as well and I hope he runs somewhere soon. Come to think of it - we are likely to have a federal election hot on the heels of the byelection - maybe Stuart wants to go for the federal nomination in St. Paul's??

Stuart_Parker

Stockholm wrote:
I think Stuart Parker would have been a good candidate as well and I hope he runs somewhere soon. Come to think of it - we are likely to have a federal election hot on the heels of the byelection - maybe Stuart wants to go for the federal nomination in St. Paul's??

It's been under discussion. ;)

Stockholm

Good. I like a story with a happy ending where everyone gets a piece of the action and quite frankly, if I were Stuart Parker I would much rather be a federal candidate. Let's face it, Ontario provincial politics are as dull as dishwater. Running federally, its much juicier with more exciting issues and being able to run against horrible people like Harper and Iggy.

Lard Tunderin Jeezus Lard Tunderin Jeezus's picture

Stuart's speech was great.

Julian's was pretty good too - and while Stuart had a truly inspiring speech, Julian might have had a bit of an edge in terms of delivery, IMO. In the end, what counted was that Julian has paid his dues in the riding for more than a decade, and had the loyalty of the party stalwarts.

BTW, Stuart - I don't know that those results were meant to be public.

Michelle

Stuart, that was a fabulous speech.  If I thought the ONDP was moving in that direction, I'd join again in a heartbeat.  (If I lived in St. Paul's, I would have joined to vote for you at the nomination.)  Thanks for sharing that with all of us!

janfromthebruce

Stuart - fabulous speech - Michelle thanks for the facebook link.

madmax

Lord Palmerston wrote:

Meanwhile, the Levy campaign is dropping literature in apartment buildings telling people their rent is being increased...but it turns out to be an attack on the HST.

Brilliant.... Connects with that demographic immediately. Someone is thinking.

madmax

Lord Palmerston wrote:

That was a great speech, and you certainly made an impression, Stuart.

YUP!

Ciabatta2

Stuart - I was there, excellent speech.  I really enjoyed it and was very impressed.

Stockholm

If Stuart runs federally, then we get the best of both worlds. The federal scene is where its at and i also think that with regard to electoral reform - its essentially dead at the Ontario provincial level, but it needs to be pushed forward at the federal level where we really need it. Stuart can do way more good at the federal level as opposed to having to deal with the mundane issues that dominate provincial politics these days.

Michelle

Perhaps.  But then, if by some off chance ;) Julian Heller doesn't win this by-election, perhaps he might try to win the nomination for the federal election?

Stockholm

I doubt it. The evidence seems to suggest that for some inexplicable reason, Julian only has provincial ambitions. He ran provincially in St. Paul in 2003, then sat out the 2004 and 2006 federal elections, then ran provincially in 2007, then sat out the '08 federal election. His website bio seems mostly devoted to issues under provincial jurisdication like education and tenants rights etc... Plus I doubt if he'd want to be a candidate for what would amount to three months - that a lot of time to take off work etc...

Anyways i could be wrong and i haven't asked the guy - but that's how i see it.

Lard Tunderin Jeezus Lard Tunderin Jeezus's picture

Julian has a family and deep connections to the community here. He has no interest in a move to Ottawa.

Michelle

Ah, okay.  I was just speculating, since people often do run for both - I don't know the guy at all, but I've heard nothing but good things about him.  I'd love to see Stuart get the nomination!

Polunatic2

I was at the meeting too (my first NDP meeting as a member) and was quite impressed with the turnout - especially since it was a beautiful summer evening. I guesstimate that there were another 50 people in the room who were from outside the riding and couldn't vote, so interest was very high. Fundraising a la Peter Kormos went well. Horwath was revved up. Lots of positive energy. Although I was supporting Stuart, I will be helping Julian's campaign. I believe they already have an office on Eglinton somewhere and that lawn signs will be ready tomorrow. 

p.s. - LTJ - were you the guy in the babble t-shirt? 

Lard Tunderin Jeezus Lard Tunderin Jeezus's picture

Sealed

Farmpunk

Stockholm:

"Stuart can do way more good at the federal level as opposed to having to deal with the mundane issues that dominate provincial politics these days."

Mundane issues?? The federal scene is "where it's at"??

Woud you care to rephrase? Or explain?

Municipal and provincial politics are what affect people's lives most directly. How the fuck does that equate to "mundane"? Is this the attitude underpining the NDP in Ontario?

 

Stockholm

I'm an individual. i don't speak for the NDP in Ontario. I personally find federal issues vastly more interesting than provincial or municipal issues - especially in Ontario where six years of wishy-washy middle of the road policies under McGuinty are hard to get excited about one way or the other. There's only so much that can be said about funding formulas for school boards or whether or not Local Health Intergation Networks should exist, or whether or not to pave such an such a highway etc...

If I were a politician, I'd much rather be in Ottawa where you get to debate foreign policy, consitutional issues, justice issues, trade issues and lots of other juicy stuff. That's just me. I know that other people think that notnhing could be more interesting that what goes on at Richmond Hill city council. Not me.

Maybe it says something about the weaknesses of the Ontario NDP compared to the federal party that I find that nothing I get from them that deals with provincial political issues captures my interest.

My main point was that Stuart Parker is known as a leading crusader for electoral reform and to me that issue is dead and buried as a provincial issue in Ontario - but it is an issue that is still very much alive in federal politics - so i like the idea of him going into politics at a level where the issue he is most closely identified with can be pursued.

Scott Piatkowski Scott Piatkowski's picture

Congtratulations to Julian, and to Stuart (did Bob drop out?).

Regardless of who you were supporting there is one indisputable advantage from Julian's nomination. Now we won't have any time lag in getting our signs up Smile

 

Lord Palmerston

No, Bob Frankford came a very distant third.

V. Jara

Good work Stuart. I am especially pleased with what you said about the HST. In fact, you outdid the provincial leader, whose quote was inaccurate or at least very inarticulate.

If you don't run federally, please consider running municipally. Your idealistic enthusiasm is sorely lacking in this country.

Lord Palmerston

By reading the article, one would think Heller mainly focused on the HST in his speech.  In fact those quotes are pretty much all he said about it; Heller addressed an array of issues.

Bookish Agrarian

V. Jara wrote:

Good work Stuart. I am especially pleased with what you said about the HST. In fact, you outdid the provincial leader, whose quote was inaccurate or at least very inarticulate.

If you don't run federally, please consider running municipally. Your idealistic enthusiasm is sorely lacking in this country.

There is nothing innaccurate in the quote.  Under the guise of the HST there will be large give aways to the largest corporations in the province while small bussiness and average people will be paying quite a bit more.  I have sat in on HST meetings with the government as the representative of a lobby group and it is pretty clear that this is about both a tax grab and a tax shift effecting average people and small business.

 

adma

Polunatic2 wrote:
I believe they already have an office on Eglinton somewhere and that lawn signs will be ready tomorrow. 

 

I noticed what appeared to be the office on, I think, the Eglinton Theatre block--across the street from St. Paul's.  (I don't know if that technicality's improper, though critics might pick on it.)

Lord Palmerston

Here's a pretty upbeat analysis:

Quote:
Yes, it’s Julian Heller who will carry the Orange and Green banner in this election, and it will be his third attempt. Mr. Heller has quite the background too that will match up well with the rest of the field. He is a lawyer by profession who is a graduate of Princeton University (B.A.) and McGill University Law School (B.C.L, LL.B). He’s a past chair of the Constitutional and Civil Liberties Section of the Canadian Bar Association – Ontario, along with many other involvements in the legal profession and as an advocate for public education. In his two previous runs in St. Paul’s he did get a solid 15% and 16%, and with what is going on with the Liberals right now, there is more than a bit of potential for growth. Why would I say that? Well, on top of there being 150 people at a New Democrat nomination meeting, which is the most I’ve ever heard of, there is this little nugget that The Star had in their piece tonight:

MPP Peter Kormos (Welland) almost single-handedly managed to raise $20,000 from the enthusiastic crowd for the by-election effort.

For the New Democrats, raising $20,000 like that at a single meeting is quite impressive and it looks like the New Democrats will be have the funds to run a full out campaign in St. Paul’s, something that they typically just would not be able to do. As I have said before, by-elections are a different beast and anything can and seems to happen in them. But from the sounds of it the New Democrats are off to a flying start in St. Paul’s...

[url=http://cameronholmstrom.blogspot.com/2009/08/its-heller-in-st-pauls-for-...'s Heller In St. Paul's For The New Democrats[/url]

 

Sunday Hat

V. Jara wrote:

Good work Stuart. I am especially pleased with what you said about the HST. In fact, you outdid the provincial leader, whose quote was inaccurate or at least very inarticulate.

There's something vaguely terrifying that - even here - people don't understand this tax yet.

This is a $7 billion tax CUT for business.

And a $9 billion tax HIKE for consumers.

Lord Palmerston

Sunday Hat wrote:
This is a $7 billion tax CUT for business.

And a $9 billion tax HIKE for consumers.

The Tories will ignore the first part, but hammer at the second part far more effectively than the NDP.

So is the heart of the NDP message going to be "unfair tax grab" or are they going to also emphasize increasing taxes on corporations and the wealthy to pay for education, social services, etc.

Polunatic2

Quote:
across the street from St. Paul's.  (I don't know if that technicality's improper, though critics might pick on it.)
I doubt that will be a problem. I doubt the Elections Act has much to say about office locations (although I may be wrong) or that anyone will make hay out of it. It would look pretty petty. 

aka Mycroft

adma wrote:

Polunatic2 wrote:
I believe they already have an office on Eglinton somewhere and that lawn signs will be ready tomorrow. 

 

I noticed what appeared to be the office on, I think, the Eglinton Theatre block--across the street from St. Paul's.  (I don't know if that technicality's improper, though critics might pick on it.)

It's certainly not illegal. Might result in a bit of teasing but certainly not improper. I've known NDP candidates to run their campaign out of a neighbouring riding's office in order to save money so this is nothing.

St. Paul's Prog...

I was very impressed with what I saw of Stuart Parker, even though I like Julian Heller as well.  I agree with Stockholm - you'll make a great candidate in the next federal election and I think your issues and concerns will probably be better served at that level.

It's nice to know the NDP is planning on making a serious run at St. Paul's.

bagkitty bagkitty's picture

Polunatic2 wrote:

Quote:
across the street from St. Paul's.  (I don't know if that technicality's improper, though critics might pick on it.)
I doubt that will be a problem. I doubt the Elections Act has much to say about office locations (although I may be wrong) or that anyone will make hay out of it. It would look pretty petty. 

The Act is silent as to the location (that is, the office is not required to be within the boundaries of the riding). It (the Act and accompanying regulations) is concerned that fair market value be charged for the space (space cannot be "donated" or subsidized ... it would be treated as a donation in excess of the legally permitted $1,100 otherwise and cause all sorts of problems).

St. Paul's Prog...

I think people are making a far bigger deal of it on babble than the voters of St. Paul's will.  It's not as if you enter a different world when you cross Eglinton Ave.!

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