The morning line

Allan Fotheringham June 7 1982

The morning line

Allan Fotheringham June 7 1982

The morning line


Allan Fotheringham

Some day, gentle folk, we will have a new prime minister. Spread in cense on the water, pray daily and

wash behind your ears. It will come to pass. A country as bountiful and as blessed as this one deserves something different. The present model is developing sclerosis of the ego, varicose veins on his charisma and now tends to offer fistfights instead of intellectual bouts. Sure sign of an arrested second childhood. There are at least a dozen possibilities from the two major parties,

neither Ed Broadbent nor Gordon Kesler being an immediate threat. Gentlemen, if you will start your engines please.

Jean Chrétien: Running hard, as he has done all his life. Some of the bloom of the Constitution rose fading in the debate on whether or not he misled the Commons on the Newfoundland dispute.

Doesn’t seem to be getting much support from his boss, who has a strange habit of looking the other way. Major handicap is realization of Quebec caucus that if francophone Chrétien follows francophone Trudeau, it would relieve the anglophone half of the

party of the obligation to continue the unwritten French-English swap of leadership laurels.

Brian Mulroney: Sexiest political voice since Joel Aldred. Jaw as long as his ambition. Aroused a lot of resentment within Conservative party with his highly publicized national “fund-raising” tour wherein he was examined by as many jaded Liberal voters as Tories. Best one-liner in party. Wife would have Ottawa palpitating. Will not have to split that massive Quebec delegate bloc with a Wagner this time. Major handicap: his refusal to try for a seat. Worried Clarkian forces now openly taking stabs at him.

John Crosbie: Only man in the Commons who doesn’t speak either of the two official languages. Lost ground in past year due to Clark’s purposeful plan to bury his high profile in lacklustre External Affairs shadow post. Hard to build a power base as a Newfie. Has

Allan Fotheringham Southam News.

is a columnist for

more wit than total Liberal front bench together.

Don Macdonald: Wants the job, though will not stab himself with his letter opener if he doesn’t get it. Has most sparkling wife in Canadian politics. Has less hair than Bobby Hull. His appeal in Quebec an unknown factor. Would be the pick of the solid Liberal structure if Gallup polls did not enter into it.

David Crombie: The joker in the pack. Disgustingly healthy jogger now, after his heart attack. Enjoys Mulroney being the lightning rod taking the abuse

while he lurks in background, ready to sneak up the middle. Travels country quietly, lining up support. Will wear running shoes.

Peter Pocklington: Edmonton zillionaire who believes more businessmen should get into politics. Also believes that his soul leaves his body at night and travels up the Nile and to the Kremlin towers. A rich, married Mackenzie King.

John Turner: Still the choice of the Liberal stables. Hair grows whiter as he waits on his Elba in Toronto’s Forest Hill. Considering the overwhelming Tory mood, might have trouble finding winnable Toronto seat. Only Liberal looked upon with any favor by the West. Clarkians fear him the most.

Paul Martin Jr.: Each semester it is my duty to invent a candidate. Last time it was Brian Mulroney. This time it is the Montreal shipping tycoon. He must get out of the starting gate soon if he is to maintain my wholehearted whimsy.

Joe Clark: Position strengthened im-

measurably in past month with complete collapse of Liberal credibility. Party doesn’t much respect him, but country hates Liberals more. Further Liberals sink, less chance Tories will change leaders. Right now, has fair chance of becoming PM again.

Gerald Regan: Every leadership race needs an impossible dream. Has world’s funniest tennis serve. His tennis serve more interesting than his chances.

Bill Davis: Brampton Billy as enigmatic as the Cheshire cat. Also as shrewd. Seems to be positioning himself if Tory post comes open. Has placed sly

aide Hugh Segal, the Oscar Levant of Canadian politics, near listening post. Ontario Tories due to recycle their leader, leaving the way open for Julian Porter if Peter Worthington doesn’t want it.

Peter Lougheed: Is sincere in his desire to leave politics soon, after investing a third of his life in it. Bristles, understandably, at any suggestion that his role in Alberta has not been of national importance.

Ed Schreyer: Would like to be Liberal prime minister. A young, energetic |man currently underemployed. Only problem, gprobably insurmountable,

is how to effect the laundering process. The question is: could Lily accept the demotion?

Roy Romanow: The defeated Saskatchewan attorney general no longer is crown prince to Allan Blakeney. The Liberals would love the Ukrainian Robert Redford and have tried before. Good tennis player, good sense of humor, good suits. Too qualified for the job.

John Roberts: No chance.

Lloyd Axworthy: No chance.

Francis Fox: Get serious.

Pierre Trudeau: All current actions and attitudes indicate no intention of staying. Is contemptuous of public as well as Opposition opinion. Is going to Versailles, going to Southeast Asia in the autumn, going to France in the spring. Claims playfully that he wishes to beat Laurier’s term, which would take him to spring, 1984. Would do almost anything to keep party from Turner. Is perverse enough to stay. Who ever heard of Falkland Islands on Jan. 17? Good luck, gentle folk.