Tuesday, March 21, 2006

POLITICS AS USUAL: When Bob Rae made my Day

I know there is some glee on the right side of the spectum of the possibility of Bob Rae leading the federal Fiberals. There are those who believe that perhaps with Bob Rae at the helm, voters, remembering 5 years of NDP mismanagement in Ontario, will flock in droves to Stephen Harper.

I don't dismiss this theory. I remain one of those who believe this to be the case, because if anyone has forgotten what the NDP did to Ontario, I am certain that I, and others of my ilk, will work overtime to make sure everyone remembers.

With all that ranted, I would like to say that I genuinely like Bob Rae. I tell the story of the very first Mike Harris Throne Speech. A beautiful fall day and, as happened quite often in the early days of the Harris Regime, a bomb threat was called in. Leaving the LG's suite me and my newly minted conservative staff brethen headed for a cold ale at the Sutton Place Hotel.

Sitting at the bar, who was there, but none other than the former Premier of Ontario Bob Rae. A good friend of mine had a copy of "Rae Days" by Thomas Walkom, a fairly damning condemnation of the NDP's years in power. I suggested that he should ask Mr. Rae to sign it.

I suggested that Mr. Rae has a good sense of humour and would probably get a kick out of one of the new, wet-behind-the-ears, tory staffers asking him to sign the book.

Now keep in mind, less than 2 hours previously, Mr. Rae and his rump of NDP colleagues, had listened to the Lieutenant-Governor outline how Mr. Harris and was going to systematically dismantle everything he had done in the past five years AND less than 3 months previously, the electorate had basically tossed most of Mr. Rae's colleagues out on their ass.

So, armed with the book and a smile, my good friend approached Mr. Rae and asked for his signature.

Suffice it to say, Mr. Rae did not have the sense of humour that I thought he might.

I, however, laughed and laughed and laughed some more.

Bob Rae for Liberal Leader... we need a good laugh.

Q out.

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