Karygiannis looks at Liberal leadership run

Toronto MP Jim Karygiannis is considering making a run for the Liberal leadership, just a week after resigning as Joe Volpe's national campaign manager.

Toronto MP Jim Karygiannis is considering making a run for the Liberal leadership, just a week after resigning as Joe Volpe's national campaign manager.

Karygiannis said Wednesday he found the current 11 declared contenders lacking with respect to foreign policy.

"During the last three or four months that I was helping with the leadership campaign, I found a vacuum out there," Karygiannis said.

Karygiannis said he believed Canadian victims of last year's South Asian tsunami were treated differently than those fleeing Lebanon.

"Our foreign affairs policy, when it comes to reflecting the makeup of this country, it's a patchwork of different ideas and a patchwork of jerk-knee reactions."

It is believed differences of opinion over the crisis in the Middle East hastened his departure from the Volpe camp. The former immigration minister has publicly supported Israel's bombing of the Hezbollah militant group in Lebanon.

Volpe's leadership campaign also took a hit earlier this year when it was revealed that donations had been accepted from children as young as 11 whose fathers were current and former drug company executives. He later returned $27,000 of the donations.

The Toronto Star reported Wednesday that after his abrupt departure from the campaign, Karygiannis called the police to prevent a Volpe official from seizing computers at the Scarborough, Ont., headquarters that contained the names of nearly 36,000 new party members he had helped recruit.

No police report was filed, with Volpe moving to new offices this week,the Star reported.Karygiannis denied taking the lists.

In the last parliamentary sitting, Karygiannis was absent for all 32 votes. He said his duties as Volpe's manager prevented him from attending.

Since entering Parliament in 1988, the Scarborough-Agincourt MP has been no stranger to controversy. He was accused of intimidation tactics while organizing for Jean Chrétien in 1990 and for Paul Martin in 2003, and was forced to issue an apology in 1991 after calling Trinidad's government "a repressive regime."

with files from Canadian Press