Sunday, January 08, 2006

Let's talk Conservative majority

Electoral ground zero GTA woke up to two newspaper headlines that must have made the Rosedale crowd choke on their biscotti, both saying Stephen Harper has visions of a majority government dancing in his head.

Toronto Star: Harper muses on possibility of majority win
Toronto Sun (can’t call them Liberal toadies: Harper hints at Liberal majority

As you read the articles you can almost see Harper’s eyes bulge as he realizes what he’s doing and starts to quickly backtrack. Even (perhaps now former?) Harper BFF Warren Kinsella went bug-eyed when he saw the headlines. This isn't the message they wanted to send.

I hope he’ll keep musing though, loudly, and I hope all Conservatives will too. Let us know who is heading your transition team. How often is Mulroney calling? Let’s start looking at fabric swatches for 24 Sussex (I hear it hasn’t been redone in years and Aline’s taste was just horrible) and finally turn Stornaway into a bingo palace like Preston wanted.

Four more years! Let’s start speculating on cabinet choices too. I dream of seeing Stockwell Day in Foreign Affairs, and I hope Jason “gay people can marry anyone as long as they’re a different sex” Kenney gets a seat right up front too.

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Anonymous said...

Agreed that this sort of musing won't help the Tories, but did you actually read the stories behind the headlines?

The Star in particular seems to have torqued it a bit. I don't think anyone who reads the stories will conclude that Harper's gloating about a majority.

And the folks who shouted out "Aha! I *knew* it!" upon reading just the headline probably wasn't in the CPC camp anyway.

Tim said...

Yes, greatly exagerated reports.

If anything this helps the Liberals, although with the kind of attention they're getting these days I'm not sure much can help them anymore.

Lie's, a track record of corruption and broken promises, it's all too much.

Now we have guys like Ujjal Dosanjh talking about the Liberal vision of a strong "state". The blogsphere is picking up on this and crying "fascisit state".

A horrible campaign run by the Liberals. In honesty I hope we lose, bring on John Manley!!! I never liked Martin anyway.

Ottawa (Nepean)

Erik Sorenson said...

If YOU had read the articles completely, you would have seen that Harper said no such thing.

Really, are the polls that bad, that you have to resort to inventing "good news" for the Liberals? Better luck next time.

A BCer in Toronto said...

I did read the articles and I fully agree, they are indeed torqued. I think the media goaded him into discussing the topic and he began to bite, then smartened up and backed-off. He shouldn't have touched the topic with a 10-foot poll for obvious reasons I won't bother rehashing, and I know he knows that.

But I still think this is relevant because as we also know, how many people do actually read the story? Many just read the first few graphs, and many more just see the headline in the paper-box or on the newsstand as they walk by.

Yes the headlines are unfair and can be taken out of context, but that's politics isn't it? I could complain about out of context headlines used in the Conservative tv ads, but it's just part of the game.

Jason Hickman said...

I'm the "anon" who posted @ 12:29am - don't know why my id didn't come though, and I *sure* don't know what the hell I was doing posting to *any* blog at 12:30 in the morning!

But anyway, BCer, I agree with you on the one hand: complaining about media bias gets you absolutely nowhere in all but the most extreme cases.

I also agree, to a *very* limited extent, that some people may be stopped dead by the headline.

But the risk that the LPC is running is that the same folks may look at *other* headlines (today's G&M comes to mind) and say "Sonofagun - I guess they *are* about to win, after all". That may lead to a positive or negative response, but it takes away the "arrogant Harper" card - 'cos it aint arrogant if it's true.

Now, as much as I may personally want to believe what the latest polls are saying, I am *not* convinced that the ballgame is over - I try to limit the influence of opinion polls whether they're good, bad or ugly. I also think any Harper hubris could be very, VERY bad for my team.

But if Harper manages to walk the fine line between arrogance and confidence in the debates tonight & tomorrow, he may be able to close the deal.

The hope / expectation of a lot of Liberals - not saying you're one of 'em - that Harper would fall on his face hasn't come true, and I'm not so sure your team has an effective Plan "B" at hand.

But as they say, a week is a lifetime in politics, etc.

A BCer in Toronto said...

Jason, I wasn't really thinking about Harper being arrogant in his musings, although if arrogant Harper were to make a re-apperance, I'd be pleased as punch.

My thinking was more along the lines that despite having had it with the Liberals, many Canadians still aren't ready to trust Harper with a majority government. If they start to see that as a possibility, the polls could change quickly.

As for a Liberal Plan B, I'm not sure the geniuses in the war room really had a Plan A. :)