Thursday, June 2, 2011

Christy Clark as Premier and Adrian Dix as Leader of the Opposition

Now that she is finally back in the house as an MLA I can get some sense of how well she is doing.  

I have to say what I have seen of her this week in the Legislature is impressing me.   She seems to be able to deal well with interchange with the NDP.    I am not saying she managed to answer all the questions to the satisfaction of everyone, I am simply saying she is good at being in the debate in the house.

As to being the leader of a government, she seems be allowing a lot more latitude for the cabinet ministers to run their ministries.    She seems to be listening to advice she is getting from a broad range of people.   She also does not seem to be acting like a talk show host as was the case in the leadership race.   The number of contradictions look to be ebbing away.

While I disagree with the decision to lower the HST, I can understand why it had to be done to have any hope of passing in the referendum.   Christy Clark is making a serious and dedicated effort to pass the HST.  I had thought she might simply let it die on the vine and place the blame of the previous premier.

She is leading a caucus that did not support her in the leadership race, but I can get little or no sense of any serious complaints against her as leader.  I do not get a sense there is a strong division in the Liberals.  Though I suspect the caucus is holding back her agenda to some extent, there are sitting MLAs that likely do not yet trust her as leader.  

On the other side of the aisle, Adrian Dix could be doing better.   The NDP is doing a better job of holding the government's feet to the fire but their improvement is easily outclassed in the house by the Liberal performance.

There is a cutting edge I was expecting from Adrian Dix that is not coming out.   It is as if he is censoring himself to try and be something he is not.  I do not think he is doing himself or the NDP any favours by holding back.   The NDP also often feels too scripted and organized when asking questions, they are treating as theatre.   It makes things boring and leaves the NDP off balance when the government provides some of their answers

How united is the NDP?   I do not think there is any strong divisions in the caucus, but I do think there are a number of sitting MLAs that are not likely to run again.   There could be some first term or two term MLAs that will not run again.  Anyone as a New Democrat MLA elected for the first time in 2005 or later that does not run again is likely someone just not that comfortable with the leader.

I am getting a bit more of idea what the NDP is about, but there still needs to be a lot more work done.

All in all I am impressed with both leaders:  Christy Clark is more measured than I expected and Adrian Dix is less ideological than I feared.

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