09.25.2015 09:38 AM

KCCCC Day 54: I’m in Whitehorse and couldn’t see the damn debate


  • Okay, so here we are in Whitehorse.  It’s snowing.  Spent a good part of yesterday visiting former Liberal MP Larry Bagnell and current Conservative MP Ryan Leef.  Nice guys, both.  Story to come in next week’s Hill Times.
  • Because we couldn’t see the French language debate – and because no one else in Yukon was watching it, seemingly – I opened up comments for y’all to comment.  Below, a summary of your takes on what you saw heard.  Bottom line: appears I didn’t miss much. Here goes.
  • Jam: From an entertainment perspective it was nice having Duceppe back at the podium. He’s got such a razer sharp wit… pity he’s a seperatist.
  • Michael Bluth:  I think overall it was a good night for everyone but Mulcair.  Harper did pick up a little ground.  Trudeau performed passable. Much less arm waving.  May tried.  Mulcair seemed to be actively working on keeping the anger down and was at times frustrated in that.
  • Christian:  Didn’t watch the debate – don’t much care anymore as I think these events are now just for partisans. I’ve sadly resigned myself that we’re going to be stuck with Harper after this is all done. What we have here is almost the exact same situation as the UK election. Parties deadlocked but then the machinery of the FPTP system kicked in and rewarded splits to Cameron’s Conservatives (its also interesting that Harper now has the guy who helped Cameron win now advising him). This will I’m afraid happen again unless something big occurs allowing one of the opposition parties to surge ahead. So far that isn’t happening.
  • Matt:  Duceppe won the debate…………….. for Stephen Harper.
  • Canadian Kate:  Was struck by how close Duceppe was to Harper on many issues. Which could make the Bloq a ‘kingmaker’ if the Cons end up with a narrow minority and Duceppe actually wins some seats (not sure what the seat projections show for him.)
  • Sean Cummings:  I rather liked Chantal Hebert’s smackdown on Andrew Coyne during At Issue last night as opposed to the debate itself. (And local CBC radio was playing it here in Saskatoon during the morning show)
  • Maps Onburt:  It cracked me up that the English translator for Trudeau had the same high, squeaky voice as Trudeau – although he didn’t get the breathless part quite right.
  • Bill G.:  Didn’t see it, was doing life stuff. On the radio this morning thru a CTV feed, old Bobby Fife said that Mulcair and Harper pretty much sawed each other off, and, Duceppe and Trudeau were the ones who looked out of place, then, said, Trudeau looked to be the loser of this debate.  Then read a few columnists who thought Trudeau and Harper did ok and Mulcair struggled.  I think the only people who watch these things now are the people who already know who they are voting for.
  • Bobbie:  1) we turned it off at the 48 minute mark.  2) turned it back on for the last 20 minutes.  Did we miss anything? No. Not one thing.  A race for second place between Mulcair and Trudeau – Trudeau doing better than Mulcair and Harper benefits from Duceppe.  Election results on Oct. 19? – Trudeau becomes the official opposition, NDP third party. Harper majority.
  • Matt: Let me just say I only watch it in short bursts because the translator voices were annoying.  From what I did see, it seemed to me there was an internal struggle going on within Muclair to prevent Angry Tom from bursting forth.  I LOL’d at Harper’s response to a question, or maybe it was a comment from May – The camera focused in on him and he simply rolled his eyes and shook his head.
  • Roger X:  I saw it and heard the translations, but early in the ‘debate’ Mulcair and Harper got into a finger pointing tiff standing next to each other, and it appeared that Harper got the better of Mulcair, in French too!!!
  • Al in Cranbrook:  PM Harper gained ground tonight in Quebec…even Hebert suggested as much. His heated exchange with Mulcair will be the topic du jour tomorrow around office coffee pots.
  • Andre Goulet:  What? None of you nerds watched the Grand Débat?  What a huge improvement on last week’s Globe fiasco, particularly in the dignity that Patrice Roy and Yves Boisvert brought to their profession. Stark contrast to the G&M editor-in-chief’s very public act of seppuku last week.  Short version:  Harper: B- for keeping to his talking points and keeping his cool, Trudeau: B for appearing competent and avoiding the shrill notes he hit at the G&M debate, Mulcair B+, but just barely, for telling Quebeckers what they wanna hear and appearing prime ministerial, May: C+ for managing to hold up okay in french and getting some valid points across, Duceppe: B for being a weirdo and an authentic politician.  Radio-canada: A+ for being smart and putting together a really great debate.  The one-two of last week and this week’s televised debates are a great argument for a future pointing to a Consortium supremacy.
  • Todd Robdon:  Lamest kung fu movie ever.

And Todd wins the comment of the night! Have a good one, all.  Me, I’m getting a jacket for the drive out to Carcross!


  1. MC says:

    “Whitehourse”? Be careful of the cold, so you don’t become whitehoarse.

  2. Danny Aldham says:

    I too liked Chantal Hebert’s smackdown on Andrew Coyne. I usually think Coyne is pretty good, but last night he showed himself totally out of touch with Quebec. And to suggest we shouldn’t talk about something…? This is a democracy, we will talk about what the people want to talk about. Get over yourself.
    I think the Left have twisted themselves into a knot on this Niqab issue and want it to go away. They so want to be inclusive and accommodating that they are willing to accept this horrible symbol of oppression if it is a woman’s choice. The same people who force Niqabs & Hijabs on women want to deny them the vote, the right to drive, the right to do damn near anything. Slippery slope from here to Sharia Law.
    The fact that Harper is using it to carve off pieces of the vote serves them right for not standing up. As Chantal said, the vast majority in Quebec support this. In the rest of Canada too.

  3. Jon Adams says:

    Ryan Leef nice? This I have to read…

  4. Jack D says:

    Debate was markedly better in my opinion. Granted I don’t speak french and was watching through interpreters, but the debate seemed to have stricken a better balance between confrontational debate and articulation of each party’s position on different matter. Much, much better than the G&M debate. Better moderating. And maybe its just me, but I like that the speaking-in-French aspect of it brought a nice energetic twist on the issues.

    But it wasn’t the best debate and Canada needs to get it’s sh*t together when it comes to debates; format, moderators, questions and broadcasting. None of its working this year.

    That said, I found Mulcair very arrogant and dismissive in the face of criticism; looking like an a**hole isn’t going to help him. I think May was a non-factor. Duceppe brought his A-Game. Harper was at times likeable and at times tiring to look at. Trudeau toned down the hyper-talk and managed to take Mulcair down a peg or two.

    IMHO, I don’t know why the hell we’re having another french debate. I don’t see what could possibly left over to discuss that wasn’t discussed yesterday. You can only squeeze so much out of niqab issue. It doesn’t make sense to have the same number of french debates as english debates because the audience for english language debates is measurably larger than the french. Just seems like a waste of time really.

  5. Maps Onburt says:

    I actually thought Steve T summed it up best:

    “Can you believe that Tom Mulcair jumped over the podium and put Justin in a headlock? And Lizzie May began cheering him on while guzzling from a bottle off scotch she had hidden in her purse? Too bad Harper had to wrestle it from her, kick Duceppe in the nuts, and then start bragging about “protecting society”. Craziness!”

    Enjoy your time up in the Great White North… imagine what it will be like in another 90 days when it’s dark most of the time (and -40)

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