To me, this cabinet smacks of Mike Harris' Ontario in the 1990s. (In fact, it has some of the same people in it)
Mr. Harper is also signalling the importance of managing the environment file in his second minority government, appointing Jim Prentice – one of his most senior and trusted ministers – as Minister of the Environment.
The post is Mr. Prentice's third, following successful terms at Indian Affairs and Industry.
Successful? Really? I'm sure that those burned by the dissolution of the Kelowna Accord, or took the time to understand Mr. Prentice's DMCA clone legislation and his blank cheque approach to the cellular industry (they of $.25/text message charges) might question how successful Prentice has been.
Two veteran Conservative MPs received big promotions today, with B.C. MP James Moore jumping to the Heritage post and Jason Kenney being named as Minister of Citizenship and Immigration.
Oh goody. Mr. Kenney has been given an entire ministry to take underground. He's been the most non-responsive MP in Calgary for years, spending his time in Ottawa playing partisan shenanigans when he should have been representing his constituents.
Mr. Van Loan's move will not be seen as a demotion however, as he now replaces Stockwell Day as minister of Public Safety. Mr. Day moves to International Trade.
Van Loan as minister of public safety? Right - that's only slightly less ironic than putting Stockwell Day in charge of International Trade. Day didn't exactly accomplish anything as minister of "public safety" - about the only thing he did was manage to avoid saying anything to prove to the public how limited he really is.
Of course, all of this is moot if Harper continues his micromanaging style there's very little chance that any of these people will say or do anything without Harper's go ahead.