Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Cabinet Making (Part II)

Keeping in mind that Shawn Graham ran on "Energy, Education and the Economy" these portfolios will go to his most prominent ministers.

Thus the "inner cabinet" if you will will be the Premier, ministers for the above 3, and of course the always important Finance Minister and Health Minister and the Government House Leader who will have to navigate through a complicated and close House.

So, here is a bold prediction:

Shawn Graham, Premier of New Brunswick

Now that the hard stuff is over... the the big six, I think five would be:

Greg Byrne, Kelly Lamrock, Roly MacIntyre, Roland Haché (who with Byrne co-chaired Graham's leadership campaign), Victor Boudreau

Some have suggested that Roly's recent health problems would keep him from a senior role but I cannot imagine that he would have run if he didn't plan to play a big role.

The sixth I think would either be Hédard Albert, Mike Murphy or a woman. There was some controversy over Carmel Robichaud who has the more experience and would be a good fit for education so she is a possibility or maybe Mary Schryer.

I also think Shawn will name someone else to be President of the Executive Council as Frank McKenna often did.

So depending on whether or not I get the six right, the rest of this prediction will fall apart.

I will put my money on Schryer for number six.

So, the big six:

Greg Byrne, President of the Executive Council and Minister of Finance
Kelly Lamrock, Government House Leader and Minister of Learning, Employment & Innovation
Roly MacIntyre, Minister of Energy
Roland Haché, Minister of Health
Victor Boudreau, Minister of Education
Mary Schryer, Minister of Business New Brunswick and Minister responsible for the Status of Women


Bryne is the obvious choice for Finance and the power I suspect he will have in this government will be similar to that of Greg Sorbara in Ontario who has played a similar role working with Dalton McGuinty up to forming the government as our Greg has.

Kelly's ministry was discussed in my last post and his role as House Leader is obvious.

Energy makes sense going to Saint John in any event and particularly considering Shawn's plans for the department and Roly spent some time as Energy Critic.

Roland is in line for an important role and it would be helpful for the Liberals to have a northern francophone as Minister of Health who is not from a Peninsula riding.

Victor spent 1995-1999 as executive assistant to Minister Bernard Richard who was Education Minister from 1998-1999 so he obviously knows the files.

Mary Schryer was left with the "left over" Business portfolio. Her experience in the financial sector will have given her experience with business and start up funds one presumes and this, much as it was under McKenna, will be a portfolio run in large part from the premier's office. Thus it gives her profile but also support from the top dogs if she needs it as she gets her feet wet in provincial government. As the most high profile woman in the cabinet, status of women makes sense as an add on.

So, that leaves us with:

Hédard Albert
Mike Murphy
T.J. Burke
Cheryl Lavoie
Carmel Robichaud
Mary Schryer
Ronald Ouelette
Larry Kennedy
Bernard LeBlanc
Ed Doherty
Abel LeBlanc
Rick Doucet
Donald Arseneault
John Foran

And the following portfolios (some of which will be doubled up).

Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs
Attorney General
Minister of Justice and Consumer Affairs
Minister of Public Safety
Minister responsible for the Regional Development Corporation
Minister of Supply & Services
Minister of Transportation
Minister of Natural Resources
Minister of Agriculture & Aquaculture
Minister of Fisheries
Minister of Wellness, Culture & Sport
Minister responsible for the Population Secretariat
Minister of Family & Community Services
Minister responsible for Seniors
Minister of Labour (Office of Human Resources & WHSCC)
Minister of the Environment
Minister of Local Government
Minister responsible for Aboriginal Affairs
Minister of Tourism & Parks

Stay tuned for Part III.


Anonymous said...

As usual good one. You are going to be the Deputy Minister of which department?

Roly MacIntyre does have serious health problems however as the Minister of Energy it may not be that cumbersome.

Spinks said...

Can someone explain how Carmel Robichaud won let alone is now being talked about as Minister of Education? (even if it is only among bloggers).

There were two MLA's I really wanted to see the voters give the boot to. Brenda Fowlie was one and Carmel Robichaud was the other. At least the voters got it right in one place.

nbpolitico said...

Spinks, as I've said to you before, I think Robichaud's letter was legitimate.

An MLA's job is to help her constituents. Her letter follows the principle of MLAs presenting petitions that they don't agree with.

Have you read the infamous letter? It doesn't ask for action, it merely explains the guy's predicament and asks if there is some kind of rememdy. It was an inquiry and one she ought to have made in my view.

However, this is politics and perception is reality. Thus, I have kept her from Education and the "inner cabinet" in my projection.

Anonymous said...

I do not think Joan MacAlpine should have been re-elected. She is a dead loss and deadwood. I believe one of the people responsible for Bernard Lord's downfall.

Anonymous said...

What about blabbermouth Huntjens who has serious disconnect between his mouth and his head? Remember his long interview with media about the changes for the old Saint John Hospital and he later said that it was just a slip of the tongue. If that was the slip then Titanic was a rowboat - loose lips sink ships.

Anonymous said...

I think Mike Murphy definitely needs to be put in the "for sure" list. He is the only Liberal MLA from Moncton-proper and Graham needs to give some influence to Moncton in order to make a breakthrough. If he doesn't, he will risk not winning an eventual Moncton East byelection. Murphy can be expected to get a major department such as Finance. As well, if Ed Doherty doesn't get Family and Community Services, I'll eat my shirt.

nbpolitico said...

Anon 9:38... Murhphy will get Attorney General and Justice which is high profile on paper and something he is on the record as wanting.

He was on my list of for sures (see Part I) just not the inner circle.

scott said...

It doesn't ask for action, it merely explains the guy's predicament and asks if there is some kind of rememdy.

Last time I looked, you need action in order to get a remedy. However, in a Liberal world where everyone drinks the "Red Koolaid", inaction somehow equals solution. Go figure. Looking forward to more promises broken by Premier-elect Shawn due to the fact that inaction=action. Can anyone say cut the GST with me? Come on, it's easy. One, two, three...CUT THE GST!!! Yeeeh haa!!

Anonymous said...

Agree Murphy will go to Justice. Think Lamrock will get Education though, Doherty Community Services, and Byrne Economic Development/Business. Suspect Schreyer might get Local Government or an economic job. Foran to Public Safety. Burke might get Post-Secondary Ed. Robichaud will get responsibility for Seniors in addition to whatever else.

Lamrock also Deputy Premier.

Anonymous said...


What on earth does cutting the GST have to do with Prov. govt.???

nbpolitico said...

If there is a deputy premier, it will be a francophone

nbpolitico said...

Scott, to paraphrase the letter, it essentially said "This is the situation of my consituent, is there any avenue he can pursue to resolve his siutation."

It did not say as you "Blue Koolaid" drinkers would suggest "please waive the law and let this wreckless drunkdriver on the road".

Anonymous said...

Interesting list.

One of Grahams promises was a separate department (or corp) for housing. I think that will be linked to seniors.

If he's gungho on "self-sufficiency" then he needs to re-think the structure of Family and Com. Services. The Income Assistance side of things needs to be relinked to Training and Employment. Lord fractured the old needs to return to Human Resources Development, and tie Labour into it......

Lamrock for DP? OMG. He has a tendancy to overpower Graham with the sound bites. Graham needs to have someone who will compliment him. A francophone too.

BTW.......Tony Hutjgens? He was the most admired Minister that Family and Community Services had at the helm in the 7 years of PC power. Very well respected.

Spinks said...

Even enquiring was inappropriate and callous in my mind ESPECIALLY for an MLA and ESPECIALLY for a former school teacher. The simple response for Carmel Robichaud should have been, sorry I can't help you and leave it at that. If I seem unsympathetic to the drunk driver, so be it, but I've seen too many people have their lives ruined by drunk drivers. The voters in Néguac should have sent a strong message that they didn't agree either and sent her packing. They didn't, she's in and this blogger will be keeping a close eye on her.

Anonymous said...

"Tony Hutjgens? He was the most admired Minister that Family and Community Services had at the helm in the 7 years of PC power."

4:43 PM

Whom that respect was coming from, the friends and family of young girl who shot herself. Family and Community Services knew the problem yet did nothing prevent the tragedy.

Or was it from the family of veteran who was sued to claw back his disability pension to pay for his wife's nursing home costs. Come on now be real. Did he not resign for some similar fiasco?

To say he was respected is an insult to those who paid very heavy price under damp squib Huntjens.

nbpolitico said...

Spinks, I guess what you and I are having is a traditonal class of the view of the left and of the right in terms or rehabilitation of criminals.

The left believe, in general, that we must take steps to get criminals back on their feet to prevent depression and other causes of crime.

The right believe, in general, that criminals have done wrong and must be punished and that doing anything to help them get a fresh start is an insult to the victims and society because it is creating favourable treatment for criminals.

While I tend to be a bit right on crime in terms of sentencing and plea bargins, I am a strong believer in the importance of rehabilitation.

My question is simple. Who is more likely to get drunk and get behind the wheel again:

A) a guy who cannot drive his can and, as a result, is trapped in his rural home, living on some form of social assistance and despite his physical/mental means to work and his having found a job he cannot work for lack of transportation.

B) a guy who has been punished by the law but who has, after considerable effort and negotiation found a means to get to and from work, who is bacl on track, has a job and has a future.

I think there is probably a 10-to-1 chance of the guy in case a reoffending.

Spinks said...

Sorry nbpolitico, this is the rare occassion where it isn't a difference opinion. This is definitive right and wrong. On this one, with all due respect, you're wrong. Almost all drunk drivers are repeat offenders. Very few have only done it once, even after being caught. This isn't a Right or Left philosophy thing. This is about parents who have lost their children to drunk drivers, people who are now crippled are disfigured because of a drunk driver. There should be no leniency for drunk drivers. They can and do kill people. As a responsible society that behaviour cannot be tolerated. Even if 10 to 1 is correct, that's too high.

Anonymous said...

Spinks, are you saying no attempt should be made at rehabilitation. Let the guy drink even more. And then he will drive illegally anyway and greater chances that he will kill someone.

How you deal with first offender who has potential for rehab? Push him to become hardened drunk or criminal or not go for rehab?

Moreoever it is well known that jails are universities for milder criminals to become hardened criminals unless means of rehabilitation are found. There is a huge body of research to support that.

Spinks said...

Tell it to the poor parents involved with groups like MADD (See

Their kids didn't get a second chance.

nbpolitico said...

Spinks I have to agree with 9:42.. Too many who break the law don't want to make amends. This guy wants to get to work and get his life on track and that is not possible. Why not give him a restricted hours 0 blood-alcohol limit license and community service instead if it will punish him just as much with out pushing him futher into the bowels of society?

Anonymous said...

Spinks, if a drunk driver kills someone it is indeed horrible. You cannot forgive such a person but you want to avoid future disasters. For sure you do not want to give him additional chances and cause (enabling) furthere deterioration that he will commit additional crimes including drinking, driving illegally and killing more.

To avoid additional killing you need to rehabilitate the person.

Anonymous said...

I should add that experts (psychologists and psychiatrists) would tell you that some individuals are beyond rehabilitation. Those do not belong in the society. They are better off locked away.

nbpolitico said...

anon at 10:27... I agree but considering that this individual is free and has just lost his license we are not talking about him being locked away.

Anonymous said...

nbpolitico: I was not referring to this person. He needed some help and appropriate request was made. I do not understand what the fuss is about.

I was only referring to hardened criminals with no ability for rehab.

Rehab is always better than pushing people into further criminal behaviour. People do that when all avenues for their survival are closed and cut off.

Spinks said...

Rehab is fine. Making an exception and putting a convicted drunk driver back behind the wheel is not. Good discussion though here folks and my apologies for comandeering NBpolitico's blog on this issue. I'll write up something at Spink About It and we can debate it there.

Monctonite said...

Murphy will get Finance. Justice and Attorney General just can't deliver the goods, and Monctonians will see that.

Peter Kincaid said...

I can't see how Mike Murphy could be out of the inner six. He carries a lot of clout and was the leader in waiting in 2003. Murphy seems suited for Finance.

I think Kelly Lamrock is over rated. He was the face of the nasty power stuggle last spring and I think he came out damaged. Lamrock has many talents but he has the same "air" as Bernard Lord and also gives the impression that he carries a knife in his back pocket. He will likely be in an inner six but probably should not so high up in the pecking order.

Greg Byrne will probably be listened to in regards to his preferences. Mary Schryner is on the rise and Carmel Robichaud will also be in Cabinet.

Just my opinion.

nbpolitico said...

Thanks for that Spinks, I was just about to ask people to veer back towards on topic... I'll be sure to link when you have your post up.

nbpolitico said...

Justice is a high profile portfolio and Murhpy will have lots of influence in the government.

Peter Kincaid said...

Many of Murphy's supporters possibly could see Murphy in Justice. Just not sure that Lamrock would fare so much better than Murphy. Perhaps you will be right though. I guess the key is what Greg Byrne wants for a post.

Jason G. said...

I have my beats on my man Rick Doucet as Minister of 'newly re-created' Fisheries department (since Shawn announced this department split at Rick's HQ during the campaign) or Rick just might have a chance to pick up the role of Minister of Transportation, since former Charlotte MLA Sheldon Lee (who should have been appointed to the senate, but thanks to Andy Scott for giving him the cold shoulder) held this position for some time and a very big transportation project exist in Charlotte County with the twinning of highway 1.

Monctonite said...

I know Justice is big, it's just Moncton will require the BIGGEST portfolio in order to believe it's not being ignored. It's not about appeasing Murphy, it's about making sure Moncton turns red the next time around.

Giving Murphy the Justice job will certainly make him happy, but it won't make Monctonians happy nor will it make the T&T editorial writers happy.

Murphy needs to be the "regional minister" of sorts for Southeast NB and Justice just doesn't bring the money home.

Sara G said...

I agree more with Part I than Part II and have to question this Department of Labour as you refer to it twice and slightly differently both times. WHSCC is a separate organization and not a part of the current Department of Post-Secondary Education & Training, although does report to it. OHR is specific to labour issues within the public service except crown corporations, there is a huge aspect of labour under Post-Secondary that would most likely be the area combined with areas of OHR to form this new Department of Labour should it be created. The Liberals did not say they would create such a department, it was brought up by the unions and the Premier-elect said he'd consider it but it was one line in one article at the beginning of the campaign. While I think it would be a good idea, there are issues that would need to be worked out to make it a workable department.

On the Carmel Robichaud issue, she is someone who will end up in Cabinet because she is a women but does not deserve to be there. While I see both sides of the argument on the letter I agree with Spinks on this one but that is not the reason I don't believe she shouldn't be in cabinet, it was her incredibly weak performance as critic of Status of Women and Education that I don't believe she should be in cabinet. She was extremely poor in the Legislature. If she can't handle asking a question how will she ever answer one and just because she is a retired teacher does not mean she would make a good Minister of Education (though you didn't put her there, but many of others have speculated on that).

Not sure, as some commentors have postulated, about Doherty over at FCS. He was extremely outspoken and critical of them and that may not work in his favour.

As for Health, Roland Haché was in very poor health earlier this year and missed quite a bit of Leg time due to it, the department may be too much for him. The department is notorious for eating people so I'd hate to see that happen to Roland or Victor (as I've heard his named bandied about for the role).

While I think Mike Murphy will get Justice/AG I have heard his name for Finance and Byrne's name for health.

Oh, it's all speculation and games and we'll know for sure on the 3rd. At the moment we don't know for sure how the departments will be organized (or named). There was some mention in the platform but that doesn't mean that's it and with the mandate that the PopGrowth Sec is going to have, why not make it a full-fledged department and really give it some teeth to get some work done?

Jason G. said...

I think nbpolitico has Byrne pegged in the right spot, but a high post need to go to Moncton area since there seems to be alot of noticible talent.

nbpolitico said...

jason - I think Doucet will get Agriculture & Aquaculture as opposed to Fisheries as his riding is real the heart of the Aquaculture industry.

sara - My thoughts on Labour are not so much on that article but because that is how Graham's shadow cabinet was structured (OHR was seperate however), but in many provinces the Labour ministry has responsiblity for negotiations with the civil service and it makes sence here too I think.

Anonymous said...

You are forgetting Stuart Jamieson who has been a minister before back in 1998-1999. He would probably look good with Tourism because of the Fundy Trail maybe. He has served since 1987!

nbpolitico said...

anon at 4:26 in my previous post I suggested Jamieson for cabinet as whip and minister without portfolio.

Jason G. said...

Interesting point on Doucet nbpolitico... time shall tell. So I figure since I work a few dozen political minded people, that I would put together a "cabinet appointment pool"! So we threw some money in the pot and the person you gets the most correct, gets the cash... check out

nbpolitico said...

jason you might be a bigger nerd than me!! Good show!