Indeed it does and on Monday, Ball proved just how steep the curve is.
Ball led off Question Period by asking municipal affairs minister Kevin O’Brien about the death last week of Joseph Riche. Ball wanted to know why the provincial government was not going after the federal government because three Canadian Forces helicopters in Labrador weren’t available for the search.
Ball did not ask O’Brien why his department did not have search and rescue helicopters available.
Remember, ground search and rescue is the responsibility of O’Brien’s department. This is something Ball should have learned last year during the Burton Winter’s tragedy.
Should have learned but evidently didn’t.
So rather than hold the minister responsible for search and rescue to account about a tragedy in the province, Ball went off in the woods trying to lay the responsibility where it doesn’t belong.
Fairity is a weak, arrogant minister at the best of times. Anyone with half a clue could have had him gutted him on the spot with a couple of quick jabs. Instead, Ball went after the tired old Blame Ottawa line and in the process O’Brien managed to put Ball on the defensive at one point.
Monday’s performance in the House confirmed that Ball is still a long way from having the political chops - the political judgment - that he’ll need if he is serious about wanting to lead first the Liberal Party and maybe the province.
If Ball he can’t get the better of Fairity O’Brien at this point on an easy issue, then Ball runs the risk of coming in third in a three way Liberal leadership race well behind the other two likely candidates. And if by some chance Ball stays on as party leader, odds are very good the Liberals will be in third place after the next general election.
All learning curves are steep if you do not try to climb them.