It will be interesting to see whether St. Laurent-Cartierville Liberal MP Stéphane Dion will come out in support of Papineau MP Justin Trudeau's bid for the Federal Liberal leadership.
At this time, Thomas Mulcair had recently stepped down as a Quebec Liberal Member of the National Assembly and environment minister and was flirting with the possibility of joining tge Federal NDP. When I spoke with him soon after Lapierre's resignation, he seemed inclined to wait for the next general election and run in his familiar territory of Laval. The NDP had only once before elected an MP from Quebec (Phil Edmonston in a 1990 by-election). Dion, though, handed Mulcair and the NDP a huge gift in Coulon. Mulcair did indeed agree to run there for the NDP. Coulon bumbled his way through the campaign, infuriating at one point the influential Jewish vote.
Mulcair trounced Coulon, 48 to 29 percent, and set the stage for a true NDP presence in Quebec. Justin Trudeau, meanwhile, had to take the tough road of competing for the Liberal nomination in the then Bloc Québecois held Papineau riding and then winning a seat. He did all of that. But was it really necessary? Why didn't Dion proclaim Justin as the candidate automatically in Papineau?
Justin has always had true star power. Had Dion placed in Outremont to begin with, Mulcair may have never become an NDP MP, the architect behind their Quebec sweep in May 2011 and now party leader. Then again, without the NDP we would not have gotten rid of the nasty Bloc Québecois. Justin is indeed the front runner to win the Liberal leadership in April. The next federal election will be in three years and wouldn't it be ironic to see Justin facing off against Mulcair.
Perhaps Justin will be able to exercise his own candidate selection process and bid adieu to Dion in St. Laurent- Cartierville. One good turn does deserve another!