The obvious question for most Ontario PCs these days is: who will be our next leader? Consensus seems to be that Tim Hudak, MPP Niagara West-Glanbrook, will be the front-runner should he enter the race.
Mr. Hudak, who is 41 years old, was first elected in 1995 and held several portfolios in Mike Harris’s cabinets.
Some would like to see either or both of federal members, Industry Minister John Baird or Finance Minister Jim Flaherty, come back to enter the race. I am not one of these. I don’t think either can lead our party to victory.
Potential candidates from within the provincial caucus are John Yakabuski, the energy critic and Randy Hillier, the MPP for Lanark, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington. I've also seen member for the Nepean-Carleton, Lisa MacLeod’s, name mentioned.
From the old guard there are veterans Elizabeth Witmer and Frank Klees. And Christine Elliott’s name has been raised, but I gather there is a concern within the party that it would be awkward to have a leader who is married to Finance Minister Flaherty.
Frankly, I not a “Klees for leader” fan, although I’d gladly vote for him as an MPP.
At this point, I favour Elizabeth Witmer and Tim Hudak, so hope both will enter the race.