Monday, May 09, 2005

Last Rat Off The Sinking Ship

Don Boudria, the last member of the infamous Liberal "Rat Pack" in Parliament, will not re-offer as MP for Glengarry-Prescott-Russell.

The Rat Pack were most effective in opposition, where their style of attack lowered the tone of debate while raising their public profile.

They proved to be somewhat less effective when entrusted with power.

John Nunziata never made the switch and got the boot for voting against the 1996 deficit-slashing budget.

Sheila Copps never recovered from her pledge to resign if the GST wasn't scrapped, and the sham speedy by-election which she won.

Brian Tobin was effectively squeezed out of the leadership race.

And Don Boudria ended up as collateral damage in the sponsorship scandal because of a weekend ski trip.

(Side note: Glengarry-Prescott-Russell, in all its incarnations, has been Liberal since 1887. Boudria's margin of victory, once well over 30,000 votes, was cut to about 5,000 in the last election. This seat could well be turned in the way the rest of Eastern Ontario is being turned. It wasn't that long ago that Renfrew-Nipissing-Pembroke was one of the safest Liberal seats in the land, either.)

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