After one year since winning the popular vote but losing the election and nine months after the departure of Bernard Lord and after having seen their numbers in polls drop from 48% on election day, to 30% in August and seeing their caucus shrink by 12%... the New Brunswick Tories will be thinking about setting a date for their next leadership convention.
I am glad to see they were spurred into action by my demand that they do so last week.
I found the following a bit disturbing however. Though the provincial executive will have the formal power to set the date, Jeannot Volpe, interim leader of the biting-off-your-nose-to-spite-your-face party said: "As caucus, we will send a letter to the provincial executive to advise them of what we would like." I am not sure that sounds entirely fair, especially if there are candidates from outside of caucus running. One presumes those who are in caucus -- who have the luxury of being better known, having established relationships with the press and a wider audience of party members and having the ability to campaign fulltime without risk of loss of pay or jobs -- would favour a different date and campaign structure than those out of caucus.
One of those out of caucus who may wish to run will actually be the subject of my next up-and-comer piece.