Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Voters, Keep Your Minds and Options Open

A Danny Williams mega majority in the fall election is not necessarily a good thing. There needs to be more people to keep a government and premier in check, to question and demand action on the premier's words or inactions. While many believe Williams' heart is in the right place, his popularity could take a swift turn if some questionable issues are emphasized more in the public, and given thought to. A couple of things come to mind. One, the Trans Labrador Highway. The phase III construction has been delayed longer than peace in the Mid East, despite promising announcements from MHA John Hickey in the past year. This should be a major election issue that opposing parties of the government, and the Newfoundland public ought to be concerned about (Labradorians are already outraged). As well, certain recommendations of Justice Green's were not intended to be put in place until after the fall election.

Like the one that says a member of the legislature is personally liable for overspending on his or her expense account.

or the one that says a member of the House of Assembly cannot make donations using public funds. (from Ed's blog)

It makes one suspicious of why that would be. Also in the past, it's been noted in other news that Danny has said that "negotiations" were going on between the government and oil companies (summer of 2006), when in fact there were none taking place, except for general correspondence. Things like that are just misleading and it's preferable to have a complete honesty in a government, not people who say things that sound good.

It's good to be very protective of your province, and seeking the greatest financial reward from mega projects. People support him largely due to this strongly projected characteristic Premier Williams seems to have. However, he may look back and wish he could have re-framed some of his comments and approaches to oil companies and the Prime Minister, like "there better be a big goose egg in the budget". That needn't have been said at the time, as peoples' hopes were already leaning that way. But saying that publicly really made it look like he was telling the PM what to do. Harper was already shying away from the equalization promise he put in writing earlier in 2006 anyway, but comments like that perhaps closed the door to a more conciliatory leverage on the PM's part. Hopefully Danny's talks and approach with big oil will turn into real negotiations, and that the long awaited energy plan will be finalized soon, and from there a reasonable agreement can be reached on Hebron and other oil developments, with continued oil explorations as well. In the meantime, as the fall election approaches, it's healthy for the public to keep an open mind, consider all options, especially anyone who is honest, hard working, and is considered a good potential district representative, no matter what party he or she stands for.

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