Peter MacKay is apparently contemplating his future according to everyone but him. MacKay has repeatedly said he loves what he is doing and he has no plans to step down. He said it last week. He said it this week. Sometimes no really means no - even when commentators try to fill a parliamentary break week with speculation instead of news.
MacKay is a talented guy and not the lame duck the Toronto Star described him as Friday. Talented people do often look forward and think about their futures. I hope Peter is thinking about his future but I take him at his word when he says he is staying. Equally, I have seen more than enough evidence to suggest he is doing fine work as Minister of Defence and the senior minister for Atlantic Canada with responsibilities for Newfoundland and Labrador.
Last Wednesday evening at an event for the Military Families Fund I watched Mackay give one of the best speeches of his ministerial career. He spoke passionately and personally about all that our armed forces have done in Afghanistan. You could hear a pin drop in that room the audience was so engaged. It was obvious this was a person who loved his job and fought hard for his constituent group. Rick Hillier is always rightly credited with being a fine motivator and leader for our forces interests - but Peter MacKay is no slouch either.
When it comes to his work in Atlantic Canada, MacKay continues through his actions to put himself in the league of regional legends such as Allan MacEachen and John Crosbie. For example, charged with the unenviable task of forging peace with the government of Newfoundland and Labrador after the tough Anything But Conservative campaign, he has played a prominent role in developing a productive relationship between Canada and the province. That was, and is, no easy task given he is from Nova Scotia and there are currently no federal Conservative MPs from the Rock.
The lame ducks in this story appear to be the ones stuck in a different pond dropping excrement for the sake of it.