BC Conservative leader John Cummins has many great attributes but suffers from common bad habits which many long-term, successful federal politicians who move into the provincial arena can’t or won’t shake.
Cummins had what could have been an amazing day yesterday with the announcement of a very credible former Liberal nomination candidate coming on board and Liberal finance minister Kevin Falcon’s not so subtle shots at Christy Clark. (see here)
This was then followed up by a full-length interview with Global TV’s Jas Johal which was terrific (especially when his daughter was featured) until Cummins stepped right into the religious ‘trap’ once again.
On the question that you knew was going to be asked about Cummins being ‘too scary for the average BC voter’, he said this:
“On a personal level, I’m a social conservative. You know what that stands for, I know what that stands for and those are sort of the beliefs that I would…ah, err… those are my beliefs” (see video here apx 4:40 mark)
Argh! Cummins had already put to rest his really dumb “gay choice” comment with an apology (see here) and although he blew it with Libertarians like myself by setting up former Reform MP and hard-core social conservative Reed Elley as party president (see here), the media looked the other way and until Elley runs as a candidate, or says something stupid again, no real harm.
How did he not learn though?
It’s because politicians like Cummins get so comfortable in a certain style and surround themselves by like-minded people as he has done with the group of ex-Reformers, he is unable or unwilling to adjust to the realities of BC politics.
How he can still not have a pat answer to this question is unbelievable. We have a premier who sends her child to private Catholic school and has her ‘reasoning’ at the ready so why doesn’t Cummins? He simply has to answer the question and then move the interviewer along to issues that are currently relevant.
It’s stunningly basic politics which even a ‘old dog’ should be able to learn.