So civil war has broken out within the Green Party over Elizabeth May’s attempt to turn her party into an official branch plant of supporters for the Dion Liberals in the final days of the 2008 election.
In the Globe, David Chernushenko, Green Party stalwart and second place finisher to May in the 2006 leadership race has blasted May for telling potential Green voters to vote Liberal instead.
Every candidate deserves to be fairly considered for a vote, and I don't believe in strategic voting and I don't believe that any Green candidate, volunteer or donor should be sold out," Mr. Chernushenko said in a phone interview yesterday.
Asked if that is what he believes Ms. May has done, his answer was yes.
"If you are encouraging people to run and then telling the voter to go, however they feel, and not vote for your party, then, that's not full support for your candidate is it?" he asked.
Chernushenko is absolutely right. Every person who decides to support a party, give money to it, and run as candidates, deserve a leader of that party who fights for every vote and every seat. That’s how our system works.
What May has chosen to do by meeting with Liberal strategists and boosting the Liberal Party is in a word dishonest to voters and to those who joined the Green Party in good faith. In the long run, it breeds precisely the kind of cynicism Greens said they wanted to change.
The good news is, she has been caught out on it.