Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Did a Red Tory revolt push Greg Medulun out as PC media director?

The PC's sent out a release to the press gallery earlier today that Greg Medulun, the director of media and stakeholder relations, has stepped down and is returning to the director of communications job at Fallsview Casino he held before joining Hudak's office.

As media relations director, Medulun was responsible for much of the messaging and tactics of the Hudak PC's over the last little while, including the hyperfocus on the HST and some of the rougher edged moves such as the QP walkouts and the protest which led to Randy Hillier and Bill Murdoch being removed from the Legislature.

Given the poor results the PC's have had under the Hudak regime so far, (running an angry and unsuccessful campaign in St. Paul's, getting crushed in Toronto Centre, and now looking down the barrel at another defeat in the critical riding of Ottawa West-Nepean) and in particular, the very negative press which emerged following the PC tactics outside, and particularly inside the Legislature during the last sitting. Many in the caucus, particularly those on the Red Tory wing of the party and the more experienced MPP's, including such high profile figures such as Deputy Leader Christine Elliott, Education critic Elizabeth Witmer, and Chief Whip/Finance Critic/longest serving PC MPP, had expressed displeasure with the rough and tumble tactics of the Hudak/Hillier axis within the party, whose strategy was promoted by Medulun. With the Tories looking at a probable loss in an important swing riding of OW-N, could caucus unrest push more Hudakites out of the way as the more moderate wing of the party calls for a re-think of strategy?

1 comment:

Craig said...

It is seriously a double-edged sword right now for the Ontario PC's. They need to run farther right seeing as there is a by-election in Leeds-Grenville also ongoing, and if the Red Tory wing pushes the agenda provincially, they run a serious risk of losing support there as conservatives stay home. If they lose their base and cough up seats (like in Haliburton-Kawartha Lakes-Brock), they would likely end up wiped off the map in 2011 unless they go after the Liberals head-on, but vote splits would haunt them badly as it leaves an opening for the Landowners. A large number of voters in those ridings are socially conservative (or at least somewhat so), but really slash-and-burn and seriously skeptical of climate change, for instance. That is why they cannot put anything on that issue in the Ottawa West-Nepean by-election as your posted, if they did they would get hurt badly in Leeds-Grenville.

At the same time, those ridings represent maybe one-third of the political map (many of them actually held by Liberals right now and represent potential pickups). They cannot win the province just by going after them, but at the same time cannot win by ignoring or pillaging them either.