PDA

View Full Version : With most voters looking ready for change, Mulcair laughing to the ballot box



Billythreefeathers
08-14-2015, 04:31 PM
John Ivison: With most voters looking ready for change, Mulcair laughing to the ballot box

http://news.nationalpost.com/full-comment/john-ivison-with-most-voters-looking-ready-for-change-mulcair-laughing-to-the-ballot-box

I wonder if the Conservatives regret calling an election during the media feeding frenzy that is the Mike Duffy trial.

The thinking must have been that Stephen Harper’s appearances on the campaign trail would deflect attention from the goings-on in court.

Those hopes look increasingly forlorn.

While most people won’t delve into the minutiae of the testimony, they will remember the prime minister looking like a character from the poster for the Usual Suspects, as he was peppered with reporters’ questions about the murky behaviour of his most senior staff.

Being caught on the defensive is never a good look for a campaigning politician and Harper lost the benefit of the doubt some time around his first prorogation of parliament.

While the Duffy trial is unlikely to shift votes on its own, it does hurt a government that was first elected on the twin pillars of accountability and fiscal competence way back when God was a boy.


Standing behind a podium with a large sign reading “Leadership,” while denying any knowledge of what was happening in his own office does not bolster the prime minister’s credentials on the accountability file.

We’re nearly two weeks into the 42nd general election and it’s clear already the ballot question is: “to change or not to change?” Polls suggest people say the economy is the issue that will decide the election. It is a narrative Harper is keen to advance. “Who do you trust on the big issues?” he asked Friday as he extolled his “proven experience in keeping Canadians safe and the economy strong.”

Yet other polls suggest nearly half of all Canadians approve of Conservative management of the economy. If that really were the lone theme of the election, Harper would be sitting around his swimming pool, rather than being asked when he stopped lying to the Canadian public.

The real barometer of public opinion is the question of whether it is time for another party to take over in Ottawa. A poll by Ipsos Reid suggested that two in three voters think it is. That change voter is split but, ominously for Harper, most of those people think the two main opposition parties should gang up on the Tories, if they win a minority (86 per cent of NDP supporters and 84 per cent of Liberal voters support the parties co-operating to form a government to prevent the Conservatives taking power again, according to Ipsos).

Tom Mulcair appears to have digested that he doesn’t need to be the greatest — just the most ready to deliver change.

The NDP took steps Friday to insulate itself from fears that it would drive the economy into the ground, while promising improved transparency and accountability.

Mulcair unveiled a new star candidate with impeccable economic management credentials in the form of Andrew Thomson, a former Saskatchewan finance minister, who will run in the Toronto riding held by federal Finance Minister Joe Oliver.

When asked why he would run such a high-profile candidate in a riding the NDP has never held, Mulcair said he loves the challenge. “I was told that I would never win in the Liberal fortress of Outremont (in Montreal), that I was foolhardy to run there. I proved them wrong,” he said.

Thomson’s recruitment is a real coup — he was the finance minister who introduced the largest tax cuts in Saskatchewan’s history, while posting a $2-billion surplus. It doesn’t inoculate the NDP against Tory charges it has a “dangerous plan to keep Canadian resources in the ground” but, as Mulcair pointed out, he has recruited a man who has done something Oliver has never achieved — balanced a budget.

Harper will have to turn the fear factor dial to 11 if he going to bring the “time for change” number back to more manageable levels.

At the moment, voters are discounting the economic consequences of changing governments — one poll suggested the number who think a change in Ottawa would make things worse is lower than the number who intend to vote Conservative. Not exactly a recipe for Tory growth.


Still, being open to change doesn’t necessarily translate into votes, if the change on offer is unappealing — as we learned in the Ontario election last year.

Hence, the need for the opposition parties to fill the shop window.

Mulcair is set on exploiting Conservative weaknesses, chief among which are its record on government secrecy.

The NDP leader said as prime minister he would strengthen the independence of the Parliamentary Budget Officer by making the position a fully independent officer of Parliament, similar to the auditor general. He would also require government departments to make financial information available to the PBO.

This is a seemingly arcane point that most voters will likely gloss over. But it plays into a broader narrative that an NDP government would not subscribe to the Conservative belief open government is a contradiction in terms — you can have one or other.


But if you’re the opposition, you have to do something different — and this is something.

Frankly, while the PBO is currently under the auspices of the Library of Parliament, and there were fears that the new budget officer, Jean Denis Fréchette, would prove to be a tame replacement for his vocal predecessor, Kevin Page, my experience is the PBO has continued to provide vital information to parliamentarians and the media, even when it embarrassed the government.

Still, it can’t hurt to formalize freedom from political interference.

With the election stretched before us like an endless sea, only a fool would make any predictions on its outcome. But it is already clear Harper has to convince more people the consequences of change will be catastrophic to their personal circumstances. Right now, Mulcair is laughing all the way to the ballot box.

Billythreefeathers
08-14-2015, 04:36 PM
Its a long campaign so people will have a chance to see what that NDP are planning,, and how much it will cost in tax hikes

dakotamar
08-14-2015, 06:42 PM
the problem is they will not see or will not want to see the tax hikes. just look at what 'we' did in ontario...

soulchaser
08-14-2015, 06:43 PM
1) Ipsos predicted a Hudak victory in Ontario's 2014 election.

2) Ipsos showed 76% of Ontarians were "ready for change" in that same election.

The minority Wynne Liberals were returned to office with a majority.

soulchaser
08-14-2015, 06:49 PM
"Thomson’s recruitment is a real coup — he was the finance minister who introduced the largest tax cuts in Saskatchewan’s history, while posting a $2-billion surplus. It doesn’t inoculate the NDP against Tory charges it has a “dangerous plan to keep Canadian resources in the ground” but, as Mulcair pointed out, he has recruited a man who has done something Oliver has never achieved — balanced a budget."


Then why didn't you run him in Sask if he did such a good job there?

Why parachute him into a Toronto riding against a high profile CPC candidate and a high profile Liberal candidate?

Something happen in Sask he doesn't want dug up?? Skeletens in the closet?

Lee Enfield
08-14-2015, 10:49 PM
I would question why anyone with the intelligence of a gnat would leave SK for ON?

Foxer
08-14-2015, 11:24 PM
I would question why anyone with the intelligence of a gnat would leave SK for ON?

You don't know that - the gnat could be drunk or something....

Pizzed
08-15-2015, 05:45 AM
I wonder if the Conservatives regret calling an election during the media feeding frenzy that is the Mike Duffy trial.I was wondering the same thing - with Wright on the stand no less. The media has been relentless going after Harper the last few days. At this time, I fail to see the 'playing chess' on this move.

As for the Ontario poll results above and Hudak's loss, what that teaches us is that if you make that one blunder that resonates with voters, you're done.

speedloader
08-15-2015, 06:19 AM
kinda like Prentice ? well I only hope anybody that has half a brain and pays attention
will see what they are doing to alberta slowly but surely racking up the debt
and trying to hide their anti oil / carbon tax agenda as long as they can

soulchaser
08-15-2015, 07:59 AM
I was wondering the same thing - with Wright on the stand no less. The media has been relentless going after Harper the last few days. At this time, I fail to see the 'playing chess' on this move.

As for the Ontario poll results above and Hudak's loss, what that teaches us is that if you make that one blunder that resonates with voters, you're done.

Except Ipsos STILL had Hudak winning AFTER his 100,000 job cut blunder.

And Wright's testimony hasn't been nearly as damaging to Harper as the media hoped.

Everyone claimed Harper knew about the repayment scheme. Wright's testimony shows he didn't.

killer kane
08-15-2015, 08:03 AM
The curtain's getting pulled back more and more, out here in redbertastan, comrade premier's little climate change reps look like real anti western civilisatin types. I'm betting by mid september she'llbe feeling a bit more comfy yet and further commie policies will surface.

Foxer
08-15-2015, 08:08 AM
I was wondering the same thing - with Wright on the stand no less. The media has been relentless going after Harper the last few days. At this time, I fail to see the 'playing chess' on this move.

As for the Ontario poll results above and Hudak's loss, what that teaches us is that if you make that one blunder that resonates with voters, you're done.

The problem is that there was no move to make. Whether the election had been called or not at this point it was still going to happen in october and this trial was going to drag into the start of in september, and the opposition was going to use it no matter what. And you can bet they'd have been 'campaigning' on it regardless of whether they were officially in an election or they weren't. By calling the election he makes sure that if they do any ads about the trial it's coming out of their election budget, and it also guarantees that the news about duffy is slighlty buried in all kinds of other election news. AND - he gets to deal with it and answer questions now when people still aren't paying that much attention instead of later during an election campaign where the first questions of the campaign would have been about this.

This isn't a 'chess' move in the sense that calling it early gave him an advantage, this is 'damage control' limiting the amount they're going to be able to talk about it and forcing the questions now. In september, he'll flood the air with various ads pointing out his good points and their bad points and make a bunch of announcements and the other parties will be in full swing and likely this will pretty much be a dead issue because it's already been discussed. I'm not sure when the trial is supposed to break again, but no matter what it's better to deal with it now than in september.

Pizzed
08-15-2015, 08:30 AM
Except Ipsos STILL had Hudak winning AFTER his 100,000 job cut blunder.They must have polled somewhere west of Milton or east of Oshawa. ;)


And Wright's testimony hasn't been nearly as damaging to Harper as the media hoped.No but the PERCEPTION the media is creating sure makes is SOUND bad.


Everyone claimed Harper knew about the repayment scheme. Wright's testimony shows he didn't.And listening to Bayne tear apart the guy quoting scripture on the stand, Wright sure picks his moments to apply his 'beliefs' to the situation.


And Foxer for the most part I agree with your analysis. I just wonder how his Team figured dealing with Wright's testimony while on campaign would be less damaging than waiting a few weeks. The media (and the public) really have short attention spans.

Foxer
08-15-2015, 08:51 AM
And Foxer for the most part I agree with your analysis. I just wonder how his Team figured dealing with Wright's testimony while on campaign would be less damaging than waiting a few weeks. The media (and the public) really have short attention spans. Oh - the media wasn't going to let this go. There were going to be questions, and if they weren't asked now they would be during the campaign. The opposition would have seen to it.
I doubt that there would have been a 'good' time to have to deal with this, but it's probably better now than in september.

Billythreefeathers
08-15-2015, 08:53 AM
I'm not sure when the trial is supposed to break again, .

I heard somewhere it will break in a few days and not continue until Nov

Foxer
08-15-2015, 09:03 AM
I know that november is the next 'start up' (to think they thought originally it would be done by june :) ). It would be nice if it was over in the next few days. It'll be forgotten by mid september if that's the case, they've already asked the PM about it, the opposition has already brought it up in the election campaign, if they keep doing so they lose time to talk about their own message and they wind up looking like whiners,

Prairie Dog
08-15-2015, 11:08 AM
CTV is interviewing some talking head (missed his name) right now. He says that this is reminiscent of Watergate.

Billythreefeathers
08-15-2015, 11:32 AM
watergate,, more like mediagate

PM Harper demeaned that Sen Duffy pay back the money he mistakenly/fraudulently claimed as expenses.

What his COS did was to try and help Sen Duffy out of a difficult situation.

CTV,, the ratings must be really slumping

soulchaser
08-15-2015, 11:37 AM
CTV is interviewing some talking head (missed his name) right now. He says that this is reminiscent of Watergate.

They all said the same crap with the media generated Afghan torture "scandal" and the entirely media created story of widespread Conservative election fraud after 2011.