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Some post-PC leadership convention thoughts, Part 1

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First some context. I have been going to political leadership conventions since the 70s, most of those as a journalist but over this past weekend simply as an observer. In fact I was probably the only one in the whole Aitken Centre Saturday who wasn’t either paid to be there or was there to support a candidate. But while I’m not a member of the PC Party and therefore didn’t have a dog in the fight, in the past I did cover and later worked for the Tories, so it was a great and pleasurable opportunity to connect with some old friends. Plus, I’m a political junkie so watching the day unfold without the responsibility to do journalism made it kind of fun – so I tweeted when and what I wanted and simply took it all in.

So some observations. 

First I must say that this was the most disorganized, mess of a convention I have ever seen. I don’t know who was in charge of details but man did they drop the ball. Everything from ridiculously long delays for voting and counting, to no pencils in Saint John to making people wait in Moncton while they figured out how to overcome an issue with the scanners. Also heard of various issues with voter registrations.

Then there was the food issue.

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By mid-afternoon the concessions had nothing to offer but nachos and skittles, and then they shut down completely. I understand the company that has the contract to run the concessions at the Aitken Centre, not the party may be responsible, but you’d think between the two of them someone would have thought that with the whole centre full of people, and for all day, it might have been an idea to prepare a little better. Heck, they do it for hockey games. Point is, people left because they got hungry.

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Among the tweets: 

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I tweeted back that I was wondering the same thing.

It would be pure conjecture to speculate on what difference a smoothly run operation would have meant, but it is undisputable that not just in Fredericton but at the satellite centres at least in Saint John and Moncton, people got fed up and left earlier than they otherwise would have. What candidates lost the most support because of this? Who knows? Maybe it was a wash.  

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End of rant about that. In the end the organizers held the voting and a new leader was democratically elected.

I also want to share, for what they are worth, some thoughts on where Blaine Higgs goes from here - the challenges he faces and they are considerable, and the opportunities he represents. But this blog is already long so I’ll hold off on that until tomorrow.

Thanks for reading. Please feel encouraged to share in whatever way you usually do. ReTweets are one way – just saying ;-)

 

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