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Tuesday, September 27, 2005

John Efford Makes Move to Help Newfoundland and Labrador

It's been all over the news services this weekend. “John Efford replaced as Natural Resources Minister”, “Martin replaces ailing Efford”, “Efford replaced at cabinet table”. Yes, indeed Mr. Efford has been replaced at the cabinet table, but is it true, as the Globe and Mail stated just this morning, that it leaves, “Newfoundland with a weakened voice around the cabinet table”? I don’t think so. In reality, Newfoundland and Labrador was left with a weakened voice in Ottawa the minute John Efford won his election bid and went to Parliament Hill in the first place.

Here we have a man who has done as little as possible to fight for his province since being elected. Between missed votes in the house and pushing Paul Martin’s objectives back into the faces of those in his home province, this man has done more harm than good for his people and it is high time he was replaced. In fact, he should be replaced not only in cabinet, but in his seat as well.

The only reason Paul Martin is keeping him around and not “Officially” removing him from the cabinet is because of the government’s tenuous position in Parliament. With the housed evenly divided in a minority Parliament, Mr. Martin can’t afford to lose even one liberal member. If this was a majority government Mr. Efford would have been cut loose long ago.

You may wonder why the Prime Minister would cut loose a member who has been licking his boots for so long. The reason is quite simple. Boot licking is nothing new on the hill, but you need to be subtle about it. It doesn’t look good when you do it too openly and we all know that Mr. Efford doesn’t even understand the word subtle.

John Efford has taken boot licking to a new level in the past year or so as he openly sits at the feet of his leader like a trained puppy. As a result of this open sellout, he has lost all credibility at home. With no credibility left, he is of no use to Mr. Martin who would probably love to see the back of him if he could afford it right now.

No matter what other papers say about the province’s weakened position in Ottawa as a result of Mr. Efford being moved out of the spotlight, don’t believe it. He weakened the province’s position when he stopped representing Newfoundland and Labrador, and that happened long before this past weekend.

Whether Mr. Efford stepped aside or was pushed is of no consequence. The fact is that in reality, this is the first time he has helped his home province. Afterall, the less power and influence this man has in cabinet the better off we all are.

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