I almost fell off my chair when I heard a couple beside me telling me that Ontario Progressive Conservative Leader Patrick Brown resigned early this morning over allegations of sexual assault dating back many, many years.
I have spoken to some so-called party insiders who felt that Brown would not be able to defeat Kathleen Wynne and her Liberal government in the upcoming election. I got the feeling that they really wanted him out and that removing him was more important than beating Wynne.
I also know several people who know Brown personally who say that he is absolutely lovely. Bright, articulate, passionate, and a real family man who speaks of the influence that his sisters had on him, and that these allegations seem very unusual and come at a very “strategic” time.
It’s all really confusing.
Nonetheless, if these allegations are true – and right now there is no reason to believe they are not – I feel bad for the victims.
But this could be a good thing for the Ontario PC’s – not the reasons for Brown resigning – but in the aftermath. The actions by Brown to step down amid the allegations was swift and should reinforce the PC’s position on sexual assault. It also provides the PC’s an opportunity to get into the race to replace Wynne by putting a strong candidate to lead the party, and there are many, many strong candidates who I feel would fit the bill.
News reports have put forward the names, Caroline Mulroney, and Lisa MacLeoud, and while I respect these women, I feel there are a few others who would do what the PC’s and Ontarians need.
First off, Christine Elliott, the wife of the late Jim Flaherty (former Federal Finance Minister), who has served as an Ontario legislator for nine years and who lost the PC leadership to Brown, would be a great Premier, as would Rona Ambrose, who led the Federal Conservative party up until she stepped down so that the new leader Andrew Shneer could assume the role.
I think right away these 2 candidates give the PC’s a known commodity, with strong leadership and vision and could re-energize the election race and stop the Liberals from continuing to ruin our province.
I felt Brown’s platform was fantastic and that if it got more press, Ontarians would see how badly we need a change of government in Ontario.
Hopefully going forward all of the issues can be resolved and we can begin the process to move forward.