Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 1/10/2009 (3670 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
GREG Selinger has regained the lead in delegate support for the NDP leadership with less than a third of the constituency meetings left to go.
Going into Thursday evening's meetings in the constituencies of Wellington, Point Douglas, St. Norbert and Interlake, Selinger had 582 committed delegates compared with Steve Ashton's 366. Some 111 delegates were undeclared or previously pledged to Andrew Swan, who dropped out of the race on Monday.
Ashton, the former intergovernmental affairs minister who has surprised observers with his strong showing, particularly in some Winnipeg constituencies, had emerged the leader after several key northern Manitoba constituency meetings on the weekend.
His win Sunday in The Pas, which had 120 delegates up for grabs, pushed Swan out of the race.
But Selinger has dominated since then.
On Thursday, he also received an endorsement from Winnipeg MP Judy Wasylycia-Leis. Wasylycia-Leis has represented Winnipeg North in Ottawa since 1997 after serving in the cabinet of Howard Pawley's NDP government.
"It's not a forgone conclusion that Selinger will win, but you'd have to say that it's his to lose in some ways," University of Manitoba political scientist Paul Thomas said Thursday. "I think I see more momentum in his direction now."
Shannon Sampert, a political studies professor at the University of Winnipeg, said Selinger has "a nice lead," but his campaign workers shouldn't get complacent.
"As a campaign strategist, that's what I'd be telling people right now. Work like you're behind," she said.
Ashton has worked very hard and achieved some surprising victories. The race is still close, Sampert said. "But I don't think if I were Ashton, I would be booking too big of a hall" for a victory party, she added.
The New Democratic Party chooses its new leader Oct. 17 to replace Gary Doer, who is quitting as premier to become Canada's ambassador to Washington. In addition to some 1,500 constituency and youth delegates, there will be 430 union and 214 automatic delegates (MLAs, MPs, party executive members, constituency presidents, etc.) at the convention.
Sampert said she was struck by how the leadership process seems to have renewed the NDP.
"Basically, we are getting a new party. This is not the Gary Doer party," she said.
That's not just because thousands of new memberships have been sold in the past several weeks, Sampert said.
"I'm also referring to the fact that Andrew Swan was clearly backed by the old party, by Gary Doer's people, by the party bosses, and the fact that he had to bow (out) early in the race indicates to me that that kind of old party establishment with Gary Doer doesn't have as much salience," she said.
"They're bringing in some new strategies and new ideas and new people. And there's certainly a sense that this is going to be a new party as a result."
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.