Where do I begin with this one? I am torn by my love of good political entertainment and dislike of people acting in a criminally stupid way.
What I had been hearing as rumours for about two months now is now out in the media, there is a faction that actually wants to remove John Cummins as leader of the BC Conservative Party.
Things have not looked nearly as rosy for the BC Conservatives since they not only lost the Chilliwack-Hope by-election but came third. The party should have been able to win that one, if you can not win one of the most conservative ridings in BC in a by-election when you have an MLA that crossed the floor and a leader that the media pays attention to, when can you win? In many ways the BC Conservatives peaked in March of this year and has since begun to decline.
Three weeks ago I had honestly thought what was going on was incompetence, but it seems like I was wrong. Vice President Ben Besler, MLA John Van Dongen and board members Milan Kljajic and James Ram are clearly out to remove John Cummins. Do any of these people have any understanding of how politics works? Do they understand how stupid they are acting?
If people had a problem with Cummins, they should have shut their mouths, worked hard in the election and then deposed him next June. Doing anything now is the height of political stupidity. The last 16 months is the first time in the last 15 years that there has been a serious party to the right of the Liberals in BC. They are clearly no longer serious.
As to people saying that John Cummins has not had an impact on the popularity of the party only needs to look at the polls. Before John Cummins become leader the party was running at 7% in the polls +-2 percentage points. Since has has been leader the party has either been in the mid teens or the low 20s depending which set of pollsters you think has the right methodology. The party has more than double in support since John Cummins has been leader.
Before John Cummins was leader the BC Conservatives they got very little media attention. In fact in early 2010 when I was pointing the potential rise of the BC Conservatives there few out there that took the idea seriously.
What will all this infighting do? It is going make the media not take the party seriously as an electoral force, any coverage is going to make everyone involved look worse. It is going to ensure people are going to leave the party and not join the party. It is also going ensure that fundraising is going to dry up. The political stupidity displayed so far should ensure that the BC Conservatives will not win seats in May and be functionally ignored by the media.
Let us say John Cummins is deposed, who would replace him? There is no one of any political stature that would step up and take on the role - and if you suggest John Van Dongen, I am of the opinion that he is just another Graham Lea, the last Conservative MLA in BC. No one wanted the job before Cummins had it and there is no serious person out there that wants it now.
I am curious to see what comes of the meeting tomorrow here in Victoria, not because the BC Conservatives will become a relevant force in the next election, but because it is politically entertaining.