Of the two major Liberal leadership candidates, Jim Flaherty's proposal to eliminate the $1.95 per vote subsidy for the political parties will help Michael Ignatieff and hurt Bob Rae. Ignatieff, the centre candidate will be able to express disappointment in Flaherty's proposal, yet vote for Flaherty's Conservative budget. He'll also be able to say to his supporters that if elected prime minister, he will bring back the subsidy. Also, as the candidate of the centre, he will be better likely than Rae to solicit donations for the Liberal Party directly or indirectly from the business community. Rae, being further to the left, will have a harder time reaching out to the business community. Also, he probably won't get the support from people who currently vote for the NDP.
I think Michael Ignatieff will win the leadership of the Liberal Party on the first ballot. My advice for him is to start running against Stephen Harper now instead of in May.
Recommended Blogging Tory post for today: The View from the Right: Conservatives Wrong to Cut Party Funding.