So Dalton appeared again today to the ordinary folk of Ontario to announce his cabinet reshuffle in the wake of Greg Sorbara's rehabilitation. I'm a fair minded guy; clearly there was no reason to keep Sorbara out of cabinet after he was cleared.
I do have to take issue with the cabinet shuffle as a whole though, because it's a prime illustration of a Liberal approach to government. To recap: Sorbara comes back to Finance, shunting Dwight Duncan off to Energy. This pushes Donna Cansfield out to Transport.
So what becomes of former Transport Minister Harinder "Oh that conflict of interest" Takhar? Does he get shoved out of Cabinet by all these shenanigans? He does not. Instead the "Ministry of Small Business" is created especially for him.
This is government by not p***ing people off. McGuinty is too scared to push one minster out of Cabinet in order to bring his friend back in, even when that minister is one with such a checkered history as Takhar. Who can forget Takhar bolting through the Toronto transportation system being pursued by media, rather than answer questions about his breaches of ethics?
This Liberal approach of never having the courage to upset anyone inevitably leads to mediocrity in government. Paul Martin's demise should be fresh enough even in McGuinty's mind that he should realise this. Stephen Harper gets it, and we see him making his own decisions regardless of popularity contests. In the end the electorate appreciates such honesty and integrity, because we want a strong leader we can trust, even if we don't always agree with him or her.
Dalton McGuinty's backbone is still missing.
UPDATE: James Calder at The Progressive Right has a similar take on this:The Progressive Right: Cheers / Jeers