Credits: Dave Thomas/Toronto Sun/QMI Agency
Politicians who come to power on the coattails of another leader usually feel the need to go to the electorate to get their own mandate as soon as possible.
You'd think premier-designate Kathleen Wynne would feel the need to do so all the more, given that she leads a minority government.
Sure, I understand, in the parliamentary system you elect the party and not the person.
But it's a long-standing tradition that voters get a chance to give their own stamp of approval to a new premier who comes to power without leading the party in an election.
In 2002, Ernie Eves made the mistake of not going to the polls early enough.
Shortly after he became premier, the province was beset by the SARS epidemic, by West Nile -- and then shut down for a week by the massive power blackout. Eves was forced to delay an election much longer than he would have liked.
Many think it was that fumble that cost him his job.
If he'd dropped the writ shortly after becoming premier, he'd have stayed in power much longer.
I asked Wynne if she felt the need to go to the polls, to give voters the chance to exercise their democratic right to affirm her as leader.
She said voters don't want an election.
"I've heard consistently over the last few months that another election is not what people want," she said.
Well, I beg to differ.
What I'm hearing from voters is an appetite to put this Liberal government out of its misery.
The more we hear about the two gas plants that were moved, the more we hear about the cash that was squandered on a hare-brained plan to privatize the air ambulance system through Ornge, the more we want an election.
Wynne insisted voters want to see the three parties working together.
She's been in touch with the leaders of the other two parties to get them on board.
If the other two parties agree to overlook these scandals, don't they become co-conspirators?
We still haven't got to the bottom of the gas plant debacle.
Why was the Mississauga plant sited where it was?
Wouldn't it have made a lot more sense for Ontario Power Generation to build a new gas plant at the site of the old (and now closed) Lakeview coal-fired plant. Why was a private company chosen?
Wynne's right. We don't need a public inquiry. It would drag on and cost millions of dollars.
We do need a legislative committee to ask questions of key players.
If that doesn't happen, who can blame the opposition for bringing the contempt motion back to the legislature?
It's the only mechanism we have to hold the Liberals accountable for this disgraceful waste of public money.
And isn't it just a tad arrogant for the Liberals to suggest the other parties have to co-operate with them?
They took a whupping in the polls in 2011. Voters sent them a message. Both the Tories and NDP picked up seats.
Liberals lost -- and should have showed contrition.
Voters told the Liberals they want them to co-operate with the other parties -- not the other way around.
What did we get? We got a premier who muzzled parliament by shutting it down and quitting when the going got tough.
The house may not be sitting, but the stench of scandal still hovers over the hallowed halls.
It's going to take an election to get rid of the smell of rotten gas.