Thursday, May 08, 2008

Keep the Primaries Going

With the results in from Indiana and North Carolina, some folks are calling for an end to this seemingly interminable primary season. The conventional wisdom seems to be that Barack Obama has an insurmountable lead and that Hillary Clinton should do the gracious thing and concede. After all, apart from Montana and South Dakota, the candidates have pretty much run out of places to keep the fight going. Or have they?

Might I suggest that the battle continue here on Canadian soil. We’ve got ten provinces with not much happening lately and I’m sure every one of them would love to have their own Democratic presidential primary or caucus.

In case you haven’t noticed, we Canadians have been following your presidential primary races with rapt attention. It’s not just the fact that whatever happens in the U. S. has a big effect on us. It’s also that, even at the best of times, political life in the Great White North is, how should I put it, kind of boring.

From Iowa to New Hampshire, from New York to California, from Super Tuesday to not-so-super Tuesday, we’ve been following your contests as if they were our own. So why not let us join in and have one last kick at the presidential primary can?

Take a look at Canada. It’s a perfect battleground for Democrats. Our national political philosophy is a kind of vague, muddied liberalism, basically the same type of thinking that guides the Democratic Party.

And we already have many of the things that Democrats claim to want. From gun control to same sex marriage to socialized medicine, we are, in essence, the Democrats’ promised land.
That’s why it just makes good sense to let the Obama-Clinton slugfest spill over into Canada.

You may not want to formally recognize the Canadian results in choosing the Democratic presidential candidate. But why not consider substituting the foregone Florida and Michigan votes with the Canadian ones? Or, better yet, have the superdelegates be bound by them.

If Obama or Clinton can manage to take both Ontario and Quebec, for example, that’s a clear indication that they’ve got the magic touch. After all, even Canadians can’t get these two provinces to agree on anything and we’ve been trying for over140 years.

Likewise, if one candidate can capture both the redneck Albertans and the laidback Nova Scotians, that’s a sure sign of a winner. Or at least it’s a sign that someone has discovered a brand of beer that both these groups like.

I can’t imagine any province turning down the chance to host one of the Democrats’ contests, be it a primary or a caucus. After all, the publicity would be good for tourism and now that all the Canadian teams have been knocked out of the Stanley Cup playoffs, frankly, we’ve got nothing better to do until curling season starts up again in the fall.

So if you get to the Puerto Rico primary on June 7th and you still haven’t picked a Democratic candidate, don’t despair. Just head north and keep the campaigns going. Remember, the convention isn’t until the end of August. What better way to spend the summer than crisscrossing our great country in search of even more votes?

And who knows? Maybe it’ll be such a rousing success that the loser will choose to stay and run for office here. Given our current charismatically-challenged leader, it wouldn’t take much to replace him. Prime Minister Clinton or Prime Minister Obama. Kind of has a nice ring to it, don’t you think?

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