Monday, October 01, 2007

Duff's With Me: Convention 2007

I was happy to hear Mike Duffy saying earlier today that the Liberal Party needs a 'policy meeting'.

Nowhere is this more true than in Quebec. This is something the grassroots have been pushing for and which is due this year - there has not been a biennial policy convention since 2005. We have made do with 'policy' 'passed' at General Counsel meetings and Special General Counsel meetings which are nowhere near the same as a convention, in terms of process, quality content and widespread attendance.

Unfortunately the braintrust in Montreal is opposed to any policy convention for whatever reason. As a policy person, I find this troubling. LPC(Q) is aware of our poor numbers among francophone Quebecers, yet resists going to the grassroots to formulate and pass policy that will resonate with Quebecers. Given the popularity of recent provincial 'green' policies, we can certainly build on what we know to be important to Quebecers in our day-to-day lives. We need policy that reflects our Leader's three pillars. Four pillars if we consider Canada's role in the world - this last is particularly important if we consider Afghanistan as a key ballot issue in Quebec.

The excuse given by the DG is lack of money. This is particularly confusing in light of certain Quebec MPs clamouring to go back to the polls - with no new policy. Does this not cost money? I daresay a general election would be a lot more costly to LPC(Q) than a properly organised, Opposition-budget policy convention for LPC(Q)

Harper is only interested in throwing cheap 'solutions' at Quebecers to show he gets it. (Nation resolution; $100 for child care). Quebecers want and need real policy that will positively affect their daily lives. The Liberal Party of Canada (Quebec) needs to take up the challenge.

Support the LPC(Q)'s grassroots in promoting a biennial policy convention at the earliest opportunity - for real change and renewal.

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