“Tom, are you trying to kneecap your leader while he’s recovering from a bad hip? Tim Powers is out there saying it looks like you’re trying to replace your leader by beating the drums for an election.”The entire exchange is just odd. The appropriate response would be something we're all familiar with: "I support Jack Layton as leader 100%. Jack has been instrumental in brining the NDP to where it is today. And I think I speak for the members and for the caucus that the party is united without a doubt behind his leadership."
Turning to face Mr. Lilley, who was parked behind the usual roped barrier put there so reporters don’t get too close to MPs at the microphones, he responded: “Well Brian, since I have so much respect for you as a journalist, why don’t you tell me what you heard me say that would make you say that, and not something that a Conservative spinmeister would say.”
Mulcair: “You tell me something that you’ve heard me say that would lead you to say that? You’re the journalist who asked me the question. Tim Powers isn’t a journalist, he’s a Conservative spinner.”(link)
Or something to that effect... The confrontational hostile Q&A is at best bizarre.
Maybe Muclair had a bad day. Or maybe there's something else going on behind the scenes we don't know about.