One of the principle benefits of first-past-the-post in eyes of its supporters is that there is local control over local candidates in a way that they claim there could not be with list candidates. And yet today we have the controversy over Bill Casey and the Conservatives. His local riding association wants him as their candidate but the central party apparatus isn’t buying it. On the radio this morning they pointed out that Harper could simply refuse to sign Casey’s nomination papers and that would be that. Casey’s situation is high-profile enough that there is at least a chance the party apparatus might blink, but given Harper’s penchant for control, I doubt it.
One can only imagine how party bosses can manipulate the situation in the hundreds of lesser-publicized nominations all across the country.