IF NOTHING else, Skeena – Bulkley Valley NDP MP Nathan Cullen’s third place finish in his party’s leadership race a few weeks ago has shown us one thing — he’s stubborn.
Stubborn because he began the six-month leadership marathon at the back of the pack and then worked his way forward.
Stubborn because after finishing third in the first round he stayed in the race all the way to the third ballot despite inching up slowly each time to finish with just under 25 per cent of the vote.
Stubborn because when he was eliminated, he refused to indicate which one of the two remaining contenders he would support.
Stubborn as well that in not announcing a preference, he freed his supporters to vote for whom they wanted, preserving the concept of electoral independence.
Cullen’s downfall is that he may just be from the wrong province.
With Quebec as a perennial battleground in choosing if not who will govern but who will be official opposition, the NDP had to choose Thomas Mulcair.
Short of a miracle, there’s no way the NDP can hope to repeat the performance of last May in capturing 59 Quebec seats. But by choosing Mr. Mulcair, the NDP will keep more seats than if it had chosen someone from another province.
Still, Mr. Cullen’s stubbornness may one day pay off in a future leadership race.