Monday, July 13, 2015

New Reform Ontario eye maybe bigger than its stomach

Now exactly half a year ago, the Reform movement in Ontario took another turn in Burlington at the Crossroads Forum when the Family Coalition Party of Ontario decided to rebrand itself with the old vestiges of the Reform Party of Ontario, which lost its registration after not running any candidates in the 2014 Ontario provincial general election. The new leader of the party, James Gault, realized the value in merging traditional moral values from the social conservative faction and modern common sense from the fiscal conservative wing and quickly took advantage of that synthesis in forming a new entity towards power. Six months into the rebranding exercise, the New Reform Party of Ontario seems to have somewhat lost its original momentum in the areas of policy, outreach, and communication and stalled at one very important juncture for its coming of age, just in time for Pride in Toronto to rain on its coming out parade.

Rather, could it just be that perhaps the New Reform Ontario eye maybe bigger than its stomach, or can it find the mythical third way of provincial party politics that has eluded so many since the New Democrats of days yore.

Only time will tell its tale, with a byelection to be held in a Tory friendly riding such as Simcoe Grey before the next general election in 2018 to bring in the newly elected socially conservative yet progressive Ontario Tory leader and federally Conservative Member of Parliament for Barrie Patrick Brown, time will be sooner than later in telling us just where this Ontario Reform movement wants to go and be for Ontarians across the province. Gault and the New Reform will have to be very careful with how they align the new found party, such a socially and fiscally mixed conservative party will have to be not too much like in Alberta with Wildrose or the Alliance and not too little such as Québec with Coalition Avenir or the Action Démocratique, yet provide a difference between it and the Ontario Tories and Grits to realign a polarized spectrum between it and the New Democrats for its electoral future. If they can do this, it will see the successes that Preston Manning could have continued towards if he kept his federal Reform experiment moving forward, however if not then expect this recipe to be unfortunately worse than what the Canadian Alliance concocted and then some with results not much different than what the Family Coalition provincially and federally Christian Heritage place election by election.