Friday, June 13, 2008

David Emerson: The Prime Minister's Silver Bullet

David Emerson: The Prime Minister's Silver Bullet
(Globe and Mail – Neil Reynolds)

Finally, we have a Minister of Foreign Affairs with the gravitas that a G7 country requires. And the skill set that goes with it. As perhaps the most competent minister at Prime Minister Stephen Harper's disposal, David Emerson was the perfect choice to replace Maxime Bernier, perhaps the least competent.

We should all thank Mr. Bernier for leaving his classified dossier at his girlfriend's place (and forgetting it for the next five weeks), enabling Mr. Harper to bring the embarrassment of the Bernier Bungle (August 2007-May 2008) to a quick, decisive and merciful end.

Having appointed Mr. Bernier for the wrong reasons, the Prime Minister was presumably relieved to dis-appoint him for the right ones.

Ironically, the elevation of Mr. Emerson gives the Bernier Bungle its only lasting importance. It affirms now that quiet leadership, solid performance and authentic achievement are career-enhancing attributes in the ministerial ranks of this government. It promises competent management – on an interim basis, at least – in the departments of external affairs and international trade.

Equally important, perhaps, it puts the right person in the right place to deal with the protectionist administration that Democrat presidential candidate Barack Obama promises to install in Washington next January. Complete Column

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