Saturday, September 12, 2009
The ballot box question will be about stability
A lot of us political junkies are trying to figure out how an election is going to be triggered and, as a result, what narrative will develop as the subsequent campaign proceeds.
The usual topics are being discussed: the economy, trust, competence, and so on. But I'm guessing that one other issue will eventually override all others — if we have an election. And that issue will be political stability. That's because this election would be different from most others in a fundamental way.
If we have it, it will be the fourth election in five years. In other words, it's a political mess. So, if we do go to the polls yet again, it's inevitable that the political system itself will be at the forefront as voters head to the ballot box — yet again.
That is why I believe that the Tories are already talking about the need for a majority, since it's an obvious choice that our system provides in providing political stability – if an when voters want it.
Alternatively, I think that the main opposition Liberals will have to make an argument that they can provide that stability leading a minority government, since a majority seems to be way out of the picture for them.
Yet Ignatieff has already tried to rule out a governing coalition, which is the surest way of providing stability in a minority Parliament. So, if he can't make that argument for stability that way, just how will he end up doing it?