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LETTER: Why Ches Crosbie’s speech was so disturbing

Progressive Conservative Leader Ches Crosbie greets supporters in St. John’s after the final election results Thursday night.
Progressive Conservative Leader Ches Crosbie was grim as he greeted supporters in St. John’s after votes were counted last week. — Keith Gosse/The Telegram

On election day, the voters decided the Liberals should govern with a renewed mandate that requires an entirely different style of leadership and decision-making. The Liberals were not given a majority (pending a recount in Labrador West) and as a result, they cannot do anything by themselves, but must have the NDP members or Independent members agree with them. I see that as a refreshing new approach for Newfoundland and Labrador and I believe Premier Dwight Ball will prosper and shine in that new environment.

Both Premier Ball and NDP Leader Alison Coffin were gracious in acknowledging the voters’ decision and embracing a new era of co-operation and collaboration as they work to serve the people of the province.

I was initially disappointed in him and even felt a bit sorry for him, but as he continued his diatribe, I found myself in disbelief and actually getting upset and angry at him.

In total contrast to that, PC Leader Ches Crosbie was obviously disappointed and bitter that he was not the choice of the people. He was ungracious, ungrateful and angry and showed a total disregard and disrespect for the expressed “will of the people.” He was obsessed with the notion of a leader having total control and “power” to do as he/she pleased. He was the only one of the three leaders to even mention the word “power” rather than focus on serving the people.

I was initially disappointed in him and even felt a bit sorry for him, but as he continued his diatribe, I found myself in disbelief and actually getting upset and angry at him. Ches Crosbie, as the leader who campaigned on a pledge of bringing “honesty” to government tried to “dishonestly” suggest that the election result had caused some level of “constitutional uncertainty or confusion.” It was done deliberately in an attempt to give some credence to his defiance of the people’s will, but it is totally without any substance or credibility. Everything that occurred on election night is fully in line with, and provided for, in the Constitution.

Crosbie also attempted to give credibility to his argument by comparing this year’s election results to the election of 1971. Again, nothing could be further from the truth. The circumstances were completely different, and for Crosbie to suggest otherwise was totally misleading, deceptive and false. Again, hardly consistent with the promise to bring honesty to the forefront.

Crosbie’s election night speech was a total disgrace and showed total disregard for the will of the people. It shows his obsession with power and his belief that the only way anyone can or should govern is with a clear majority.

I was also deeply offended by the nastiness and bitterness in his remarks suggesting he would “deliver Dwight Ball’s head on a platter.” What kind of attitude and language is that for a man who wants so badly to be the premier of the province?

I found his comments inappropriate at best and truly shameful, disgraceful and disturbing at worst.

I doubt I am the only one offended by such an inappropriate and unacceptable outburst and would suggest that a retraction and an apology are in order.

Roger Grimes, former premier
St. John’s

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