Musings —03.26.2011 08:30 AM—
- As I type this, Stephen Harper is standing outside Rideau Hall, declaring that an election is underway: So here we go, Canada!
- Why, why, why, why did you force an election, Iggy? I got a few really nasty missives from pseudonymous gutless wonders about my Sun Media column yesterday – and more than a few attacks on Ipsos, about whose poll I had columnized. These anonymous critics hissed that Ipsos and I were dead wrong about the Tory-Grit gap, that we were in the service of Satan, blah blah blah. Well, the Star/La Presse poll on the front page of this morning’s papers kind of suggests that Ipsos and I weren’t so far off the mark, doesn’t it? “The survey of 2,365 Canadians reveals the Conservatives are in the lead nationally with 39 per cent support, the Liberals at 25 per cent, and the New Democrats at 19 per cent. The Bloc Québécois has 10 per cent support and the Green Party 7 per cent.” So, once again, with feeling: why did the Liberal leader and his “brain trust” elect to force an election? Why?
- And that’s not all the Grit misery we have to report, folks! The English media haven’t (typically) picked up on this beaut, yet. Here’s Bellevance: “Seulement 11% des Québécois comptent voter pour un candidat libéral le 2 mai, révèle un sondage CROP-La Presse réalisé du 16 au 21 mars auprès de 1000 personnes. Le Bloc québécois recueille 38% des intentions de vote, et le Parti conservateur maintient ses appuis à 23%. Le NPD arrive troisième avec 20%, et le Parti vert est bon dernier avec 8%.” You don’t need to understand français to absorb that bombshell: in Quebec, Bloc 38, Conservatives 23, NDP 20, and the Liberals at 11 PER CENT. Jesus H. Christ: that’s the lowest the LPC has ever been in la belle province, I reckon. Once again, with feeling: why did OLO force an election? If you’re a Lib, like me, expect to repeat that to yourself about a kabillion times in the next 36 days.
- Best opening day statement: Jack Layton, hands down. All of the leaders were good, but Layton’s Montreal HQ speech was very impressive. Hit all the right notes in the right way. Amazing visuals, with crowd of flag-waving supporters behind him. Not bad.
- Big winners so far: Speaker Peter Milliken, Stockwell Day, Albina Guarnieri, Chuck Strahl et al. They all announced, poignantly, that they weren’t running again. For the most part, all of them served Canada well, and we Canadians should all be grateful for that. The best to them and their families. And, speaking for myself, I will miss you in particular, Stock. I trust the feeling is mutual.
- Big losers yesterday: Stephen Harper and Michael Ignatieff – Harper for his appalling absence during the tribute to Milliken, and Ignatieff for being unprepared (and looking it) for the coalition question he has known that has been coming for two years. Milliken was respected and loved on all sides of the House; why Harper wasn’t there to pay tribute to him is unforgivable. Ignatieff, meanwhile, has since clarified his coalition stance, but I remain mystified why he and OLO senior staff were so clearly unprepared for the Reformatories’ favourite smear. It’s game time folks: wakey, wakey!