November 15, 2019

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Grits hear opportunity knocking now that Doer era is ending

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 27/8/2009 (3731 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 27/8/2009 (3731 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

WILL Gary Doer's departure mean the Liberals can improve on their two-seat standing in the legislature?

It's possible, according to political scientist Paul Thomas, who says that the Grits had difficulty differentiating themselves from the centrist NDP government during the Doer years.

"(Liberal Leader Jon Gerrard) may get his reward at last and enough of an opening there that he might get to official party status of four seats in the legislature," said Thomas of the University of Manitoba.

Gerrard said the next election "is going to be very different" without Doer at the NDP's helm.

"I think certainly when you have somebody who's been as experienced as Gary Doer (leaving) there's... an opportunity for the Liberal party now to do much better next time around," he said.

Gerrard is proud of the fact that his party's membership has increased to 5,000 from 1,000 in the past 14 months.

"I'm looking forward to some very exciting politics over the next two years," he said.

Gerrard has vowed to lead the Grits in the next provincial election.

But Doer's exit from provincial politics presents an opportunity for the Liberals to rejuvenate their own party by selecting a new leader, said Jared Wesley, a U of M political scientist. "I wouldn't be at all surprised to see Jon Gerrard say 'this is a good time for me to leave as well'."

— Larry Kusch

Larry Kusch

Larry Kusch
Legislature Reporter

Larry Kusch didn’t know what he wanted to do with his life until he attended a high school newspaper editor’s workshop in Regina in the summer of 1969 and listened to a university student speak glowingly about the journalism program at Carleton University in Ottawa.

Read full biography

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