Scott Brison on Michael Ignatieff:
OTTAWA -- Michael Ignatieff was portrayed Wednesday as a gaffe-prone amateur by at least one Liberal leadership rival after the presumed front-runner was forced to clarify his latest controversial comment.
In the most pointed broadside yet against the acclaimed academic, Scott Brison said Ignatieff's repeated miscues suggest the rookie MP has poor political judgment and insufficient experience to lead a national party.
"These gaffes are damaging to a leadership campaign but they will be terminal to a national general election campaign," Brison said in an interview.
That was from a Canadian Press story from Wed. Aug. 30 2006 where Brison was speaking about Ignatieff's comment to the Toronto Star editorial board who asked him if he would run for Parliament again if he loses the leadership, Ignatieff's clipped response was: "Depends who's leader."
Ignatieff later backtracked and said "Let's be clear. I am planning to run in the next election in Etobicoke-Lakeshore. I love being an MP and I've enjoyed it enormously and I'm looking forward to doing it again."
Brison had more:
"Brison said that in nine years in politics he hasn't made as many "retractions and clarifications" as Ignatieff has made in just nine months.
Brison compared Ignatieff to Stockwell Day, who jumped from provincial politics to become leader of the now-defunct Canadian Alliance without any experience at the federal level.
Day's tenure at the helm of the Alliance, which eventually merged with the Progressive Conservatives to form the Conservative party, was short-lived and disastrous.
Brison said Ignatieff is "smarter than Stockwell," now Harper's minister of public safety. But he added Ignatieff faces an even steeper learning curve, having spent almost 30 years out of the country as an academic and journalist.
Brison took Ignatieff to task for other recent so-called gaffes, including telling the Star that Canadians "live and operate in a heartless world and you need leadership that understands that."
"When you see the world as being heartless, that helps someone justify ruthless acts," such as Qana, Brison said.
He also chided Ignatieff for saying that Canada's peacekeeping tradition "died" with the genocide in Rwanda.
Brison said that remark could only come from someone who's spent 30 years outside the country and fails to appreciate how important peacekeeping is to Canadians and to Liberals in particular, who view party icon Lester Pearson as the father of peacekeeping.
He also scoffed at Ignatieff's recent admission that he's not sure he's "up to the price you have to pay" to succeed in politics."
So in 2006 Brison thought that Ignatieff did not have sufficient experience to lead a national party.
I wonder if yesterdays story about Ignatieff's rookie mistake on policy and subsequent lie makes Scott feel any better about Ignatieff's political skills now vs 2006?
I doubt it.