Former Ottawa mayor pushed to challenge new environment minister
OTTAWA — Liberal organizers are encouraging former Ottawa mayor Bob Chiarelli to run against long-time nemesis John Baird in the federal riding of Ottawa West-Nepean, setting the stage for one of the most bitter political grudge matches in the national capital’s recent history.
The party’s riding association has had preliminary discussions with Chiarelli about becoming the Liberal candidate, riding president Joseph Thornley said Friday.
“We have several people who are pursuing the nomination at this point, and Bob is one of them, and obviously we’re delighted,” he said. “My sense is that he’s interested but not committed.”
Chiarelli and Baird have jousted since their days in Ontario provincial politics, but the rivalry intensified this fall when Baird waded into the Ottawa municipal election campaign to question the wisdom of Chiarelli’s cherished light-rail transit project.
I received 905 votes during the last federal election. Baird won by over 5000 votes. But that was under ideal circumstances.
1) The Liberal Party had been proven corrupt many times over.
2) The Liberal Party were in power way too long.
3) The Liberal Party ran a weak candidate.
While No. 1 won’t likely change, No. 2 & 3 will not be a factor…and nor will No. 1 by the time the next election rolls around, to be honest. And remember, Ottawa West Nepean has been a traditionally a LIBERAL riding for decades.
Throw in a well-known mayor who actually lives in Ottawa West Nepean, the whole O-Train Drama, their mutual animosity against each other and who knows what can happen.
One thing is for sure, though, John Baird won’t win by 5000 votes.
Ya think my 905 votes becomes more of a bat in the next election?