The showdown in Virginia Waters is shaping up to be a modern gunfight at the O.K Corral.
There might not be a Earp, Clanton or McLaury in the mix, but it has the making of a tension filled stand-off that is going to play out over weeks, not seconds as it did in Tombstone.
When the air is cleared, the political fortunes of all three parties will be on display- setting the tone for the 2015 or Fall 2014 general election.
This government has usually been quick of the mark to call by-elections after members resign. The government has 60 days to set the date of the by-election. The Conservatives are set to elect a new leader/premier at a convention in July. The cutoff for nominations is just 11 days away.
Business Magazine's Top 50 CEO wants this job. The mother of two, community volunteer and successful role model called out Kathy Dunderdale demanding she resign the seat so residents could have effective representation. Bennett announced last year that she would seek the Liberal Nomination in her home district of Virginia Waters in the next general election. The time table has moved up considerably but she is holstered and ready to go.
Dunderdale acquiesced and resigned on Friday past. The well-oiled Liberal team responded with a nomination call for candidates today. Folks have until high noon on March 8th to file their papers. Voting will take place on March 13th.
The NDP have not opened their nominations yet but defeated Mayoral Candidate and former city councilor , Shelia O'Leary announced via Twitter today that she wants the role. She has a high profile in the city and is no doubt paying back the NDP for their support of her failed bid for the Mayor's chair. Her personal numbers are probably higher than the party's at the moment.
The media is fueling speculation that Ward 5 Councillor Danny Breen will seek the Conservative Nomination. He has been known to be interested in running for provincial politics. He confirmed his interest to the media on Friday, saying he is interested but says he will miss municipal politics. Considering he won the seat by acclamation just a few months ago, perhaps he can be forgiven for the cost of a by-election in the Ward if he seeks the provincial nod.
Breen and O'Leary served on council together.
This by-election is a zero sum game for all three parties. A poor showing for the NDP with a vibrant star candidate will have repercussions for septuagenarian leader Loraine Micheal who is facing a leadership review in May.
The Liberals have not won a seat in St. John's this century!
I can not wait for the real campaign to begin.
It will be interesting to read the political epitaph on the Tombstone.