Tom Axworthy, Chairman of the Centre for the Study of Democracy, provides regular media commentary on issues such as the democratic deficit, accountability in parliament, ethics in the public sector and international responsibilities.
He is co-chair of the Liberal Party Renewal Commission, and from 1981 to 1984 he was Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister of Canada, the Right Honourable Pierre Trudeau. Dr. Axworthy was recently made an Officer of the Order of Canada. He is also author and editor of several books and articles including: Marching to a Different Drummer: An Essay on the Liberals and Conservatives in Convention (Toronto: Stoddart, 1988), and Searching for the New Liberalism: Perspectives, Policies, Prospects (Oakville: Mosaic Press, 2003).
Professor of Policy Studies, Kathy Brock, says that the first ballot will be revealing only in so far as it reveals the depth of support for Ignatieff among the party officials and ex-officio delegates, as well as the leanings towards Rae, Dion and Kennedy. This will give a hint of the second ballot where the real story will be told.
She also suggests that each of the top delegates will face significant challenges in positioning themselves as leader even before they face the Harper challenge. In addition, the challenge of the Liberal party will be to emerge from the convention with a semblance of unity and this will be a tough challenge – how the leaders and their followers handle the race will be key here as will the character of the new leader.
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