July 18, 2017

My 5 Favourite Politicians Of All Time

Who you admire can reveal a lot about you.

Maybe you have an older sibling who is a strong influence in your life – someone you look up to and emulate. We can therefore discern that you have similar values as your sibling.

Or perhaps you’re a big Wayne Gretzky fan because of his dedication to hockey and long list of accomplishments. As a result, it’s likely that you aim to be committed and accomplished in your life.

Someone recently asked me about my favourite politicians of all time. Well, to give you the chance to get to know me – a PC Party Leadership hopeful – I am sharing my answer on my blog. Here are my five favourite politicians, and why…

1.       Sir Winston Churchill

It is said that as wartime Prime Minister of Great Britain, Churchill mobilized the English language and sent it into battle. In other words, he was a skilled orator! He gave the best defence of democracy I know – that it is the worst possible system of government, except for all the others. Churchill was also a creator of the Atlantic Charter, a document signed in Newfoundland waters in 1941, laying the foundation for peace following WW2 – a peace we still enjoy! Churchill is a figure of great political significance.

2.       Franklin D. Roosevelt

Historians argue that Roosevelt was the greatest man of the 20th century. He was president of the United States of America from nearly the beginning of the Great Depression in the early 1930s to nearly the end of the Second World War. He changed the American system of government when he originated the New Deal, and skillfully supported the United Kingdom in fighting Hitler's siege, bringing the United States into the Second World War. There is no question that he was a transformational leader.

3.       Brian Mulroney

Mulroney was not afraid to tackle the big issues, free trade with the United States being his major legacy piece. He was a great friend of Newfoundland and Labrador, as shown by his support, against much opposition, for support of the Hibernia oilfield. This investment forms the foundation for the Newfoundland and Labrador offshore industry today.

4.       John C. Crosbie

My father was instrumental in ending the despotic Smallwood regime with its irrational and expensive economic development policies, and in assisting the Moores government to provide good government in the 1970s.

Dad’s tenure as a member of Parliament in Ottawa from 1976 to 1993 saw him take a leading role in the national issues of the period, while being perhaps the strongest federal cabinet representative we have had since Confederation. He was a fierce backer of the Hibernia project, and obtained the support of Prime Minister Mulroney to make it happen.

Dad is remembered for the closure of the cod fishery 25 years ago, the largest industrial closure in the country's history. Fishermen were understandably furious and upset, but most if not all now agree that the closure was necessary to save the codfish for the future – and my father handled this challenging task with courage.

5.       Sir Robert Bond

Ted Rowe’s biography “The Greatest Newfoundlander” states his estimation of Sir Robert Bond in the title. Fortunate enough to be independently wealthy, Bond was a lawyer who devoted his career to elected public service. During the 1890s bank crash, he put together a financing package that saved the day, famously giving a personal guarantee in the process. Can you imagine that happening today? Bond gets high marks for dedication to the public good and to good government.

The common theme in my choice of favorite politicians is courage, resilience, and dedication to good government – and the delivery of good government! As you can probably guess, one of these political leaders had more influence over me than the others.

If I decide to run for Leader of the PC Party, and I’m elected Leader in April 2018, I hope to be remembered for courage, resilience, and delivery of good government.

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