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The coronation of Danny Williams

"Governing Newfoundland is a form of licensed insanity," CBC's Rex Murphy once said. Premiers don't really govern, "they measure their stamina against the intractabilities of history, geography and the unemployment stats." Canada's newest province has only had a handful of leaders since joining Confederation in 1949. From firebrands like Joey Smallwood to measured – some say dull – diplomats like Roger Grimes, the people of Newfoundland and Labrador have chosen their premiers not by party but by personality and promises.

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It's been more a coronation than a re-election campaign for Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Danny Williams, says CBC News' Rex Murphy. On Oct. 9, 2007 the Progressive Conservative leader captures a second majority term. The latest incarnation of the "fighting Newfoundlander," his iconic status was solidified with his promise of "no more giveaways" of natural resources. In this wide-ranging profile from The National, Williams beams with talk of progress on out-migration and the rural economy but keeps the heat on his Tory adversary in Ottawa. 
• Danny Williams's Progressive Conservatives took a whopping 69 per cent of the popular vote and 43 of 48 seats in the assembly. It was the highest vote share since Joey Smallwood took 70 per cent to form the first post-Confederation government in the 1949 election.

• The Liberals took nearly 22 per cent of the popular vote, which translated into just two seats. Liberal leader Gerry Reid lost by just seven votes in his riding of The Isles of Notre Dame.

• NDP leader Lorraine Michael won her party's only seat when she was re-elected in Signal-Hill-Quidi Vidi. The NDP garnered just 8 per cent of the popular vote province-wide.
Medium: Television
Program: The National
Broadcast Date: Oct. 9, 2007
Guest(s): Wade Locke, Danny Williams
Host: Peter Mansbridge
Reporter: Rex Murphy
Duration: 12:47

Last updated: May 7, 2012

Page consulted on September 10, 2014

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