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PoliticsWatch's Top Performers 

(PoliticsWatch Posted 5:30 p.m., June 27, 2007)

Independent MP Bill Casey


1. Bill Casey (Independent MP) 

The veteran Nova Scotia MP was kicked out of the Conservative caucus in June after voting his conscience on the Conservative government's budget implementation bill. Casey spoke out against the budget because of its negative impact on his own province. The fallout created a crisis for Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his government, both within caucus and with the provinces, which continues as the summer begins. No single MP had a bigger impact in Ottawa this sitting than Casey. The mild-mannered former car dealer has long been considered one of the best constituent MPs on the Hill. 

2. Ralph Goodale (Liberal MP)

Goodale is another veteran MP whose performance as opposition House leader has been invaluable to the rebuilding Liberals. Goodale has not only a solid grasp of parliamentary procedure but he seems to know every issue that arises in federal politics inside out. Last year, the first poll of MPs for Maclean's magazine rated him the best MP. 

3. Stockwell Day (Public Safety Minister)

Day is the only Tory cabinet minister to make this list. Most of the other Conservative cabinet ministers had a rough few months or have been invisible. Day remains one of the steadiest, high-profile hands in cabinet and his name has appeared in stories speculating on replacements for Defence Minister Gordon O'Connor. Day, who struggled during his brief reign as Canadian Alliance leader, is also proving that there can be a second life in politics. 

4. Elizabeth May (Green Party Leader)

May is not an MP, but she still make this list. The media-savvy Green Party leader is keeping her party at respectable levels in the polls, has a presence on the Hill (unlike her predecessors) and was able to negotiate a deal with Liberal leader Stephane Dion to have the Liberals not field a candidate in the Central Nova riding she will try to win in the next election. They may not have an MP in the Commons, but May is making things happen for the Greens. 

5. David McGuinty (Liberal MP)

McGuinty made PoliticsWatch's list of under performers in December but has excelled in his role as the Liberal environment critic. McGuinty is very knowledgeable of his file, can go toe-to-toe in the House with ferocious Environment Minister John Baird and is a master of showing the indignation so necessary for effective opposition MPs. 

6. Pierre Poilievre (Conservative MP)

Like McGuinty, Poilievre was on PoliticsWatch's under performers list in December largely for bratty behaviour. This year, he is now one of the top performers primarily for his performance as an MP on the high-profile public accounts committee. If Liberal MP Mark Holland is Perry Mason on steroids, then Poilievre is Matlock on andro. His style of questioning witnesses seemed to make even the very skilled Jean Pelletier and Chuck Guite a little nervous at a recent committee meeting on Adscam. 

7. David Christopherson (NDP MP)

Christopherson is the other MP on the public accounts committee to make the list. Not much gets past the former Ontario solicitor general in committee. As well, Christopherson is one of the less partisan MPs on the Hill. 

8. Dominic Leblanc (Liberal MP)

While his public profile has been low in the House and in scrums this year, Liberal insiders tell PoliticsWatch Leblanc has been playing a critical role behind the scenes bridging old leadership divides. As the vice-chair of the party's Policy and Platform committee, Leblanc is also actively trying to get the Liberals back on a sound policy track before the next election. 

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