The polls open in less than 24 hours, but despite running a bubble campaign that has seen at least 119 Conservative candidate muzzlings and a Prime Minister in Stephen Harper that is no longer deigning to answer questions from members of the media, the true face of the Conservative agenda is beginning to show.
For example, there's Dean Del Mastro, the Conservative candidate for Peterborough, who in this video tells a pro-abortion rally on Parliament Hill. Del Mastro assures the crowd that the abortion "issues matters and is not going away" and that the abortion "laws will change in this country." (h/t) No matter what Harper says (when he is willing to actually speak to people) his caucus clearly has other ideas on abortion:
Then there's Peter Kent, the former Conservative TeleVision (CTV) anchor running again as a star Conservative candidate in Thornhill. In a recent debate, Kent called for more private clinics in Canada, a dangerous move towards a two-tier health care system for Canada where there's one system for the rich (who can afford to follow Stephen Harper's stock tips) and another for the rest of us. Once again, Harper's flimsy promises are overridden by his own caucus:
A Conservative candidate's suggestion that a private clinic be used as a model for health delivery across Canada prompted opposition charges that Prime Minister Stephen Harper wants to expand for-profit health care outside the public system.
Peter Kent made the comment during a recent campaign debate in Toronto's Thornhill riding.
Besides letting their ultra-conservative mask slip, the Conservatives are also staying classy on the campaign trail. Like Luc Harvey, the Quebec Conservative MP that showed up at a BQ campaign event to shout at and heckle Gilles Duceppe. Remember when Preston Manning wanted to restore decorum to Ottawa? I do.
A Conservative MP crashed a Bloc Québécois campaign event in Quebec City today, haranguing Bloc Leader Gilles Duceppe who was shaking hands and meeting voters at a local market.There's also Axel Kuhn, the Conservative candidate in Etobicoke-Centre, who distributed a flyer attacking Liberal incumbent Borys Wrzesnewskyj that contained out and out lies, attacking him for not attending committees he's not even a member of, or that don't even exist.
Conservative candidate Luc Harvey narrowly won by 231 votes in the riding of Louis-Hébert in 2006, and is fighting for his political life in the face of polls that predict a Bloc victory in his riding in Tuesday's election.
As Mr. Duceppe talked to farmers and clients at the Marché Public de Sainte-Foy, Mr. Harvey walked up from behind and asked Mr. Duceppe to say what he has accomplished since his election in 1990.
“Tell us about your record,” Mr. Harvey shouted.
What does it take for an Ontario Superior Judge to leave his Thanksgiving dinner to grant an emergency injunction? Ask Axel Kuhn, the Conservative candidate in Etobicoke Centre, whose latest electoral advertising effort seems to cross the line into actual defamation, according to Justice G. R. Strathy, who earlier today took the rare step of barring Kuhn’s campaign from distributing campaign literature targeting his Liberal rival, incumbent MP Borys Wrzesnewskyj.
And then there's Stephen Harper himself, who delayed his campaign schedule last week and held his first impromptu press conference to attack Stephane Dion for being unable to answer a poorly-worded question in his second language.
I don't buy their smokescreen that he couldn't answer the question because "he has no plan" for the economy. He has been talking about his plan for weeks before Harper even introduced his platform. The plan was expanded with the "30-day plan, unveiled in the French-language debate, a plan Harper attacked as a sign Dion was "panicking" on the economy.
How, prey tell, could Dion be panicking by releasing a plan when he doesn't even have a plan? The Conservative talking points are tripping over themselves. They make no sense. Their presser was about insinuating that because Dion's English isn't perfect (it's better then that CTV interviewer's though), he's not fit to lead our country. I even heard a Conservative radio ad the other day that used the line "can you imagine him representing us on the world stage?" Real nice. I'm sure this message will go over real well with all the Canadians for whom English is their second language.
It's a good thing for Conservatives that Canadians are more understanding of Harper's difficulties with French:
We're also more understanding of Stephen Harper's problems with English. Unless we're really voting on February 14th:
And unless he really gave us $300,000 in tax breaks (I'm still waiting for my cheque, by the way Steve):
This has been one of the most mean-spirited campaigns I've seen in years run by the Conservatives, and one that has been based almost entirely on lies. They lie about our climate change plan, they like about our massive tax cuts, they say we'll cut the child care subsidy when we'll really increase it, they say we'll raise the GST when we said no such thing and that indeed we will not, they put out attack fliers filled with lies that Ontario Superior Court judges have to interrupt their turkey dinners to issue injunctions against. They display no empathy for ordinary Canadians worried about their jobs and their savings and offer no plan for the economy besides buying bargain stocks. Their candidates refuse to attend all-candidates meetings or talk to the media, and their "leader" even turtles for the last days of the campaign, afraid he might go off script and say something he actually believes.
Do we really want more of this? Recommend this Post on Progressive Bloggers