January 8, 2012 6:56 am

Rae won’t rule out bid for permanent leader

OTTAWA – Bob Rae, who has been acting as the Liberal interim leader since the party suffered an unprecedented loss in the 2011 election, won’t rule out a bid to take the spot permanently.

The current rules governing the Liberals don’t allow for an interim leader to seek permanent leadership.

But with a national convention just days away, those rules could change.

During the three-day meeting in Ottawa this week, Liberal members will elect a new national executive board which will be responsible for setting rules.

In an interview on The West Block Sunday morning, host Tom Clark asked the Liberal leader whether he would consider “ever seeking the position of permanent party leader.”

Rae answered only referring to the current rules, saying, “The party executive made a decision with respect to the appointment of the interim leader… I’ll continue to respect the rules.”

Virtually no Liberal MPs have come forward to take a shot at leading the embattled party, though that could change once they know who the executive is.

Only Quebec MP Marc Garneau has said he’d consider running, but he has also signaled he’d be happy throwing his support behind a younger or more experienced candidate.

The next leader is expected to be selected during the spring of 2013. The exact date of the leadership election will be determined at this week’s convention.

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