Patrick Brown is suing CTV for libel, because he claims he was wronged.
Yet, just in December, he was slapped with a defamation suit from Premier Kathleen Wynne, but he dismissed that suit as a stunt.
I do not know how her suit was a stunt considering he said something that wasn’t true, she demanded he correct himself, he refused, and then she warned him she would sue him for defamation, and he didn’t correct himself, and then she made good on her threat (which she had done with the previous Ontario PC leader, so she was not one to just talk a good talk).
Considering the number of different sorts of accusations and internal investigations against him, he is going to have a much harder time in court than the typical man. There are too many fires, and his reputation is already in serious question, as he already comes off as something of a spoiled and conniving man-child who must be micro-managed.
As I have said before, Brown is going to be in far more serious trouble, but it isn’t #MeToo that will sink him. That was just an opening salvo, and a sucker punch. The fact that it all came out before the upcoming election is interesting. The Wynne Liberals would have easily won at least a minority running against him. Wynne’s numbers mean very little. Donald Trump’s numbers were also nothing to write home about, but when you are running against a propped up turnip, all you need is a single catchy platform, and you can skate to victory. There are far too many teachers and civil servants who will vote Liberal no matter what. They may not like Wynne, but they like their jobs, and want to keep them just as they are.
Wynne is shrewd. She was an underdog in the Liberal leadership race. She managed to turn a minority of an unpopular regime into a majority. No one in Toronto would vote for a Barrie boy when you have one of your own in the race. No matter how bad Wynne’s numbers are, she can pull a rabbit out of her hat. I have no doubt of her political acuity. Brown is no match for Wynne on any level. He needs a posse to prop him up. Wynne has her wits. She doesn’t need to be liked to win, and that is a rare quality that most politicians do not possess.
Brown losing face was in the Grits’ favour, but not the turns now unfolding: Ford, Mulroney, and Elliott could snatch away just enough of a base to unseat her. I wouldn’t count her out if Ford (the most unlikely winner) won. I also wouldn’t write her off if Elliott won. Wynne, like Jean Chretien, is, at heart, a street fighter. She plays to win, and she does her best campaigning.
I would say Mulroney would be her biggest threat, despite the fact she is a newbie on the job. So was Justin Trudeau. Canadians love brand name politicians — even if the previous generation was reviled when leaving office. We still have interest in a British monarchy. This is the next best thing to having one. If Mulroney runs, she would handily win. In this country, pedigree trumps street smarts every time.
Wynne has a talent that shouldn’t be wasted, and she ought to set her sights to a federal platform instead. The Right in this country hate her guts, and that always helps to show your own base what prowess and power you possess. At this point, she is wasting her talents. She got the brass ring here. If Brown was still in play, she could walk all over him to retain that crown.
But Brown is a sinking ship. He is not a comeback kid. It will not matter how his libel suit turns out — win, lose, settlement — he has too many strikes against him, and he greatly overestimates his own cunning. When the going got tough, he ran away like a scared little boy. The first reaction is the only one that counts.
As is the first reaction of his own party. The PCs has been beaming and brightly once he was kicked to the curb — and all those so-called members he supposedly signed up are turning out to be as genuine as Twitter followers.
What has already sunk him is his own party’s jubilance at his ouster. When you are in a dysfunctional free fall at the absolute worst possible time, and are happier because the previous status quo crushed your spirit — the province reads the memo and knows exactly why it happened.
And when your own traditionalist and staid party celebrates your removal, it signals to the world about the quality of your leadership — and hints what the rest of the province will face if you are put in charge of them also. He may believe he did nothing wrong, but his own misperceptions are blinding him to the obvious.
But not the rest of the province.