Lo­cal writer re­acts to Kennedy res­ig­na­tion

The Compass - - OPINION - Bill West­cott writes from Clarke’s Beach.

Hum­ber East MHA Tom Mar­shall, who was shuf­fled back into the fi­nance min­istry last week Pre­mier Kathy Dun­derdale, said he in­tends to work out his full term, but will not seek re-elec­tion in 2015.

Jerome Kennedy, how­ever, walked away from his con­stituency on Nov. 1 to pur­sue other in­ter­ests. It is widely known that Kennedy has been los­ing in­ter­est in his fi­nance po­si­tion for a num­ber of months and one can imag­ine the slip­ping down­ward in the opin­ion polls for his Con­ser­va­tive party has been tough and per­haps em­bar­rass­ing for him.

That be­ing said, the ques­tion can be asked: Should Jerome Kennedy have hung on and worked out his full term, as Tom Mar­shall says he in­tends on do­ing?

Sur­prised and hurt, Kennedy’s loyal con­stituents in Car­bon­ear-Har­bour Grace must be sur­prised and hurt by his sud­den de­par­ture. They stood be­hind him through the years and now it ap­pears they will take a back seat as their rep­re­sen­ta­tive walks away from them to re­turn to his law prac­tice, write a book or two and per­haps go for a PhD.

Kennedy can and should be ap­plauded for his de­sire to pur­sue other lofty things while he is in good health, but could not th­ese as­pi­ra­tions wait un­til he ful­filled his prom­ise to his peo­ple?

Per­haps there should be a law that says gov­ern­ment mem­bers, es­pe­cially those in cab­i­net, can­not walk away from their port­fo­lios un­less it is for sound rea­sons, such as ill health.

Jerome Kennedy did a fan­tas­tic job for New­found­land and Labrador since he first joined the Danny Wil­liams gov­ern­ment and car­ried out his ma­jor re­spon­si­bil­i­ties in a num­ber of key cab­i­net posts un­der Kathy Dun­derdale with hon­our and dis­tinc­tion.

Pre­mier Dun­derdale, re­gard­less of their ru­mored in­ner squab­bles mak­ing the me­dia rounds, will no doubt miss Kennedy big time.

I have to won­der, though, if she feels the same as many do about Jerome’s sud­den de­par­ture and would have ex­pected him to con­tinue in her gov­ern­ment through the ob­vi­ous stormy months that lie ahead.

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