The Senate scandal has shredded Stephen Harper's credibility. You would think that would cause a caucus revolt. But, Michael Den Tandt writes, it isn't happening:
I caught nary a whisper of this turning into open revolt or even a long-term subterranean assault along the lines of former prime minister Paul Martin’s multi-year campaign to supplant Jean Chretien in the late 1990s. The reason is simply that Harper’s hold on his party is too powerful. For many Conservative MPs, he is the only leader they’ve known. “There’s no talk of leadership revolt,” said one. “People are nervous and concerned. That’s a long stretch from a leadership challenge.”
That's not surprising. The party is full of members who can't speak without a script. And the scandal has taught us that the PMO provides the script. That said, things could change:
There’s the possibility that Wright and Duffy will be charged criminally; and that other actors in the saga, including senior sitting Conservative senators, will be caught up in the investigation. No one can predict how any of that will play out.
Harper's strategy is to ride it out. He's done it before -- and he's thrown a lot of people under the bus. The prime minister is assuming that Wright will lie down quietly as he grinds his former chief of staff into the dust.
The question confronting Mr. Wright is the same question which confronts every member of Stephen Harper's caucus. How much self respect does he have?