Harper overhauls his cabinet – may do more harm than good

Julian Wolfe
July 15th, 2013

Prime Minister Stephen Harper has announced his cabinet shuffle in light of a scandalous spring session he would rather forget. The Duffy Affair isn’t gone yet, and while changing face may aide Harper, it turns out some of the people he’s promoted may do more harm than good to his credibility. The Duffy Affair wasn’t a cabinet problem, but rather a PMO problem which found its way to the Prime Minister himself.

Below is the new cabinet, classified by the old, the new and the changed. While Harper’s cabinet now includes 12 women and contains a lot of changes, it remains one of the largest and most bloated cabinets in history with 39 members. It is a cabinet that won’t necessarily help the tarnished brand, with people like Pierre Poilievre, Chris Alexander and Kellie Leitch who have given the Conservatives a bad name in the past with their abilities to dodge questions, contradict themselves and government narrative. Besides, who can forget Poilievre’s views on terrorism?

This cabinet offers a new face, but the scandals plaiguing this government can’t be fixed with a cabinet change. If the opposition plays close enough attention to some of the new ministers, they can take Harper’s credibility down a notch – especially in democratic reform.

What do you think of the cabinet shuffle? Is it an improvement? A downgrade? Will this shuffle save Harper’s image?

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