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October 19, 2008

Stéphane Dion: When Was the Last Time There Was This Kind of a Show of Grassroots Support for a Canadian Politician?

And when was the last time a group of everyday Canadians were moved to take this kind of political action on behalf of a Canadian politician? You'd probably have to think back to the days of Pierre Trudeau to think of a time when ordinary Canadians felt this strongly about a political party leader. 

Over the weekend, ordinary Canadians

to urge Stephane Dion to stay on as leader and to protest the disrespectful treatment of Dion by some anonymous sources within the Liberal Party in recent days.

Will it be enough to prevent Stephen Harper from achieving what he set out to do on Super Bowl Sunday in January 2007, when he launched the now-infamous attack ads on Stéphane Dion: to prevent Canadians from ever experiencing a Canada under Dion?

Only tomorrow will tell.

Img_1397 In the meantime we might wish to ponder what Canada may have lost: a man of integrity and vision. Rather than pandering to the polls, true leaders put forth a bold new vision that inspires us and shows us the way forward that we need to take if we wish to realize our full potential as a nation. Dion did that brilliantly and Canadians let him down by allowing getting sidetracked by Harper's promise of a balanced budget (well on its way to becoming a broken promise) and solid economic leadership (solid because he cribbed it from Dion).

Dion has everything it takes to make a brilliant party leader, if given the opportunity to grow in the job. He's a man of intelligence, integrity, and vision -- and he also cares passionately about his country and its people. Politics, for him, is a means to an end; not an end in itself.  If he's replaced, he'll no doubt be replaced by Mr. Charisma, Mr. Business, or Mr. Shake Everybody's Hands and Refill the Party Coffers. What they won't find is another Dion. He's a once-in-a-generation kind of party leader. And, should he resign, he will be sorely missed.

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