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Bill Kelly: Is a Harper comeback possible?

Former prime minister of Canada Stephen Harper speaks at the 2017 American Israel Public Affairs Committee policy conference in Washington, Sunday, March 26, 2017.
Former prime minister of Canada Stephen Harper speaks at the 2017 American Israel Public Affairs Committee policy conference in Washington, Sunday, March 26, 2017. AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana

An email written by a Quebec Conservative riding association president is raising some eyebrows in political circles.

In the email, Richard Hofer, president of the Conservative riding association in Pontiac, suggests that the Conservatives suspend their leadership race until Oct. 15, and in the meantime appoint Stephen Harper as interim leader, possibly with an eye to regaining the leadership of the federal party.

READ MORE: Conservative Party resumes leadership race, sets Aug. 21 deadline for ballots

No need to delve into the good, the bad and the ugly of the Harper years, which included years of deficit budgets and acrimonious relationships with provincial and municipal leaders, but suffice to say that, in 2015, the majority of Canadian voters concluded that the Harper government was long past its best-before date and voted it out of office.

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The draft Harper idea is likely a reflection of the angst many Conservatives feel about the quality of the candidates who are seeking to replace the much-maligned Andrew Scheer, whose own poor performance was the cause for the current leadership race.

READ MORE: Coronavirus — Tory leadership candidates attempt to navigate crisis

It’s worth noting as well that this is the second leadership race for the Conservatives in the last few years, and once again, most of the expected successors to Harper, namely Rona Ambrose, Lisa Raitt, Jason Kenny or even Brad Wall, have taken a pass on seeking the top job.

After two significant election defeats, it seems the Conservatives need to figure out who they are and what they stand for.

But looking in the rearview mirror is rarely the best way to move forward.

Bill Kelly is the host of the Bill Kelly Show on Global News Radio 900 CHML.

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