Musings —03.13.2012 12:00 AM—
Lacking anything in the way of substantive argument in the blossoming Robocon scandal, some conservative partisans and media cynics have taken to denigrating popular opposition to the Conservative Party’s alleged election fraud.
Thus, a Sunday rally on Parliament Hill that attracted only a few dozen people was summarily dismissed by a Windsor Star headline: “Robocall protests fizzle.”
On the same day, 75 people attended a Winnipeg protest, which CJOB headlined as “sparse attendance.”
More than two dozen protests took place across the country, in Halifax, St. John’s, Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver. Some attracted hundreds, some just a few dozen. My colleague Michael Coren, who has mocked the protests, wrote: “The verdict? Nobody cares. We have better things to do.”
That, in the main, has been the Harper regime’s main communications strategy in the Robocon disgrace: No one cares. And that may well be true. But passing judgment in the early days of Robocon, as Coren and others have done, isn’t risk-free. They may just end up being proven wrong.
Polls, not rally attendance, are usually a better way of assessing public opinion. And a poll released on the same day the nationwide protests took place — by Ipsos, the leading public opinion research firm in Canada — found that an astonishing three-quarters of Canadians are clamouring for a public inquiry into the scandal.