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Vision communications guy moves on to Bob Rae

December 6th, 2008 · 10 Comments

In my ongoing efforts to make sure everyone knows where everyone is on the chess board, I am pleased to inform you all that Ian Baillie is moving on from media-wrangling at the Vision campaign to being B.C. manager for the Bob Rae campaign for the Liberal leadership.

This ought to help with the ongoing efforts to forge ties between the pinker Liberals and Vision, in Vision’s ongoing quest to be a broad-based centre-left party. Unless Michael Ignatieff wins, in which case, oops. Or something.

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  • Interesting.

    I liked Bob’s response to Federal events yesterday and the way he’s handled the whole prorogation mess.

  • Wagamuffin

    Good luck to him with that.

    Canada, where are the fresh NEW faces in our political landscape coming from? And when will they get here?

    Not soon enough.

  • A. G. Tsakumis

    Bob Rae is the most danferous politician in the province.

    His existence only serves to reinforce the dire need for new blood. And honest blood.

    For those of you not versed with his absolutely toxic, destructive swath through Ontario, let me tell you, there are STILL parts of that economy that are aching back to where they were before he destroyed them.

    He is the most shameless politican in Canada and will be defeated by Iggy.

    Rae is an absolute disgrace. After screwing up so badly, I can’t even imagine how he looks in the mirror. A true sociopath.

  • Coldwater

    No really, tell us how you really feel A.G. Don’t mince your worlds now…

  • A. G. Tsakumis

    Sure…actually what I should have added was that Ian is a first-rate operative, who is principled and capable…believe me, those qualities are RARELY contained in the same political aide.

    Sad that he has such a lack of judgment, though, that he’s off to support such an ass as Rae.

    Good luck Ian. Wind at your back.

  • MI Supporter

    There was at least one Michael Ignatieff supporter who was a regular on the Vision campaign.

  • Wow AG show some respect. Iggy and Rae are both great contenders, but I favor Rae as he’s the better statesman, orator and more progressive – just what Canada needs. I want a working government and think the coalition is the way to go. Many other progressive working countries have coalitions. Canada needs to go this route.

    As for Rae’s ‘baggage’ and situation in Ontario here’s a great piece by Angelo (Toronto Star article):

    Rae can be proud of his ‘baggage’
    Nov 09, 2008 04:30 AM
    Angelo Persichilli

    I’ve spoken with many Liberals and they all agree that Bob Rae is witty, intelligent, can eloquently articulate his thoughts in both official languages and always has a sound bite for the media.

    Furthermore, he has integrity: He has never been involved in any personal controversy and his honesty has never been doubted. Nonetheless, many question his chances of becoming leader of the federal Liberal party. Why? He has “baggage.”

    Okay, let’s deal with this baggage: his years as NDP premier of Ontario.

    In 1990, Rae became the premier of a province that didn’t vote for him but was eager to get rid of David Peterson. Rae didn’t lie to Ontarians; he explained his programs during the campaign but voters paid no attention because no one – including Rae – expected the NDP to win.

    Unfortunately, he and his party found themselves holding the bag for a province facing the worst recession since the Great Depression. As reported in Rae Days, columnist Thomas Walkom’s informative book, one of Rae’s closest advisers, David Reville, said they had “the passion and the theory. But we didn’t have any fu**ing idea how to make things work.”

    Rae tried to implement the ideas he’d presented during the campaign but the recession was ravaging the economy. He wasn’t the only one who misjudged the severity of that recession; hundreds of once healthy companies and skilled entrepreneurs went broke.

    That’s the first part of Rae’s legacy, but he revealed his true political stature once he realized his policies were outdated and decided to do something about it.

    He made a courageous decision to stand up to the public sector unions, which were asked to take a pay cut under the social contract. He also stood up to a federal Liberal government that cut funds for medicare and education.

    Union boss Bob White called a meeting with all the NDP premiers to give them their marching orders on how to cope with the economic crisis. As Rae recalls in his book From Protest to Power, White suggested the provinces keep spending; if they couldn’t pay their debts, they could declare bankruptcy “like the Reichmanns.” Roy Romanow, the then premier of Saskatchewan, led the charge against White along with Rae. “After that exchange,” Rae writes, “there was nothing more to be said.”

    Rae decided to put aside his personal political interests and stand up for the people of Ontario and the future credibility of the NDP.

    He fought hard and alone against Ottawa and the unions. Organized labour started an “Anybody but Rae” campaign. Five years later, and without an apology to Rae, they changed the slogan to “Anybody but Harris.” If the economy keeps going down the path it’s on, no doubt they will have “Anybody but McGuinty” posters printed.

    In the 1995 provincial election, Rae paid for his and others mistakes but he stood with dignity; he understood the mistakes and decided to move on.

    I don’t know if it was the right decision, but he joined the Liberal party with the same courage and commitment he’d shown as premier. He faced criticism and abuse from all sides but he worked hard and won his nomination and his riding twice.

    Now, when star Liberals are hiding in corporate boardrooms and turning their backs on the party that gave them power and influence, Rae once again stands up and tells small “l” liberals: I’m here and I’m not afraid.

    That’s what leadership is all about.

    Liberals might have many reasons to vote against Rae but his baggage as former NDP premier of Ontario shouldn’t be one of them.

    Angelo Persichilli is the political editor of Corriere Canadese. His column appears Sunday.

  • Jane Bouey

    News this morning is that Bob Rae is going to pull out of the race.

  • Summer McFadyen

    oops. That’s gotta hurt. the one day job. what’s Ian’s next move.

  • Arnold

    Frances – Now that you are no-longer part of the that most dreadful of asper rags I will be happy to read your blog in order to keep abreast of Vancouver Civic doings. I haven’t allowed a VS rag to touch my hands since the firrings of Russell Mills and others. I read the Tyee and now you.
    Best of luck