Job lots on the Green executive

The release doesn’t seem to be on the Ontario Green Party’s website yet, but by e-mail I’m informed the party has a new interim female deputy leader, Melanie Mullen, the existing female deputy leader, Victoria Serda, having stepped down to focus on her work as a town councillor in Saugeen Shores.

Nothing against Mullen, who’s unpolished but obviously knowledgeable, and pulled 11.4 per cent of the vote as a candidate in Niagara Falls in the last provincial election … but why the heck does the party specifically have male and female deputy leaders, and male and female regional representatives?

This is the sort of thing that makes the party look like leftover hippies, ascribing more value to intrinsic characteristics than personal qualities and ideas in choosing officers.

The party just acclaimed Jeanie Warnock as its eastern region female representative — who was, of the dozens of provincial candidates I met in the last election, one of the two weakest, least prepared, most ill-suited to the task of winning office that she’d set for herself (the other possibility was the New Democrat in her riding, whom she beat by 60 votes). The only reason she’s on the Ontario Greens’ executive now is because of a party quota. It’s not a recipe for success.

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3 responses to “Job lots on the Green executive

  1. Ouch! The Grinch arrives, just in time for Xmas.

    Every political party has informal – and sometimes formal – policies for promoting equal participation by women in politics. The NDP in BC recently set aside a certain percentage of their ridings for female candidates, for example.

    But I guess you’d call them hippies as well, even though they form the government of BC more often then not…

    Your personal comments on Ms. Warnock are beneath you, David. Jeanie is a professor at Ottawa U. so I think there is more to her than you suggest.

    She has been recognized by GPO as the most effective regional organizer in the party. Her region, E. Ontario, was very successful in the Oct. election. Her own campaign was the most successful ever in that riding, so voters didn’t agree with you.

    I suspect she was “acclaimed” because no candidate felt able to defeat her in a vote.

  2. It’s wrong that the B.C. NDP does it, too. Plus they didn’t do it when they were forming governments, which they’re in no danger of doing very soon.

    My comments on Jeanie Warnock aren’t at all personal, and they’re not remotely related to her day job, which I’ve no reason to doubt she’s very good at. I’m just saying what I saw in her as a candidate.

    The Greens have a total right to govern themselves however the Greens see fit. But this sure comes across as a relic of a time I thought the party was trying to leave behind.

  3. I think that the male/female role designation will go away in GPO soon enough. But we’ll try anything to get more women involved in politics…

    Within GPO, I’d say the consensus is that Jeanie would have been re-elected to the executive against any opposition, male or female.

    The Serda angle is a lot more interesting. The short version, in my opinion, is that the job of GPO leader is now tasty enough to attract challengers. (This was not true in the past, and it is still an unpaid position.) But a failed challenge is bitter.

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