RightThere is nothing like the prospect of total defeat to concentrate the mind. The Alliance and the Progressive Conservatives are talking and balking at a potential merger just in time for the Martin steamroller to reduce them to skid marks. With the NDP burying itself in gay marriage and support for the Palestinians and the Alliance and the PC's trending over towards the social conservative right, Martin can practice his style of fiscal conservatism combined with selected social welfare and health initiative, without any serious opposition. If he can just persuade Sheila to bail and join the NDP with her half dozen Liberal supporters he would have a long and happy premiership.
Having Mike Harris get off the golf course and front the PC/Alliance reconciliation would have seemed like a good idea back in 1995; now it would just be one more tired Ontario politician trotted out to make the essentially unattractive policies of the Alliance square up with the schizophrenia of the blue and red factions of the Progressive Conservatives. While Peter MacKay and Stephan Harper are potentially excellent leaders, the presence of the fundys and the socons in each party to the shotgun marriage will ensure endless electoral defeat in urban Canada.
All of which will ensure at least one and likely two or three more majority Liberal governments. Martin to Manley? And so on. With the governments of British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec all in nominally Liberal (or soon to be Liberal hands) the real political debates in Canada will be in the back rooms of the Liberal Party. The right will unite into a long night of feeble opposition.