Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The Cabinet Shuffle

Early thoughts about the federal cabinet shuffle:

* Gordon O'Connor gone as Defence Minister. No surprise. Once upon a time Defence was a minor post, usually given to some light weight. No more. With the war in Afghanistan, the government needs to communicate to Canadians as to why the effort is worth the high price we are paying. Will Peter MacKay be up to the job? Who knows? But he will be an improvement over O'Connor.

* Maxime Bernier to Foreign Affairs. Bernier is one of few stars in Harper's cabinet. And I think the man most likely to succeed the Prime Minister. Maybe that's why Harper wants him out of the country. I would rather have seen him as Finance Minister.

* Jim Prentice going to Industry. Not a good move. Prentice is a media darling, but a Red Tory and I fear he could do a lot of damage in that post.

* Diane Ablonczy in Cabinet. It's about time.

* Bev Oda out as Heritage Minister. Good news. Oda who is more liberal than the Liberals never met a government subsidy she didn't like. However, I doubt her replacement Josee Verner will be much of an improvement.

* Big disappointment. Jim Flaherty remains as Finance Minister. A sign the Tory drift to the left will continue.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

I just hope that MacKay will be able to find Afghanistan on the map.

Janet said...

I'm not that upset to not see Bernier as Finance Minister. It could have been a good sign for Canadians, but more likely it would have signalled the silencing of another libertarian voice in the government.

Fiscal conservatives were happy to see Flaherty in the post, and the government's agenda has shown just what a strong hand can do to fiscal conservatism.

I'm betting (maybe too hopefully - I like to think that one or two of them have a spine) that Harper knows that he would meet too much resistance with Bernier in Finance when he wanted to enact another wave of conservative subsidies.

Hopefully we will get some real freedom in trade with Bernier in his new post... and it would be very sad to see the work he was getting done in Industry reversed or subverted.