01.23.2017 01:20 PM

Should the CPC use Harper for fundraising?

If it works, sure. A snippet from this week’s Hill Times:

Liberal strategist Warren Kinsella said Mr. Harper has always been a “polarizing candidate,” and, as a result, has the dual affect of mobilizing and motivating both Conservatives and Liberals.

“The Conservatives are using him in fundraising because he’s popular with their vote, and Liberals are using him in their fundraising because he’s unpopular with theirs,”said Mr. Kinsella.

Mr. Kinsella said he used to help draft fundraising letters while working for Mr. Chrétien, and while they’re filled with lots of sentence fragments, all caps, underlines, and bolding,“the main thing is who’s signing it.”

“These letters really work if they’re coming from the right person,”he said.

“The good news for [Conservatives] is [Mr. Harper’s] still willing to help out. The bad news for them is he’s gone. Whoever follows him, I don’t see any one of the candidates with the skills or the ability that Harper obviously had.”


  1. the salamander horde says:

    .. I believe I saw Stephen Harper’s most recent communique .. quite an astoundingly long winded endorsement of his former Minister Jason Kenney or a Unite the Right rationale to get all the Wealth Out of the Ground movement. Save the Bitumen Eh! Frack the Earth Society etc

    I’ll try not to be too scathing here.. but I found it to be long winded, tedious.. quite the sermon from the ivory tower mount.. in short, ridiculous hectoring posturing to The Base, who might have spare cash.. the usual alarmist stuff. Now there was some historical fact buried within for the intrepid reader (which I claim to be.. and I did not speed read it either – I read carefully & absorbed) I was quite curious what the career politician who heroically single handedly went after Canada’s Navigable Waters, Environmental Protections, Endangered Species etc etc might have to say.

    In my humble estimation, it was like cobbled together stuff from that pseudo intellectual Ken Boessenkool with a little help from Ray Novak or Stephen Lecce to save the great venti man time. I truly question why Harper would give Kenney the time of day, he might as well have pimped. for Peter Kent in my view, or Dean Del Mastro. Actually, the screed had a hysterical accuracy & thoroughness that could have come from a Peter Van Loan or that that learned Justice scholar Vic Toews if paid by the word, to expound. I suspect Harper is mounting a backroom reverse Morman attempt to bolster Alberta as the Last Redoubt – a firewalled Hole in the Wall outpost .. for disenchanted ReformerTories.

    • Tiger says:

      Or, Harper has a high regard for a cabinet minister who served his ministry well, and is ideologically simpatico, and wants to help him succeed in forming a united alternative in Alberta that can win the next general election.

      But your mileage may vary.

    • Kevin says:

      You know, I can get a better grade of nonsensical bullshit by listening to Rex Murphy.

  2. Charlie says:

    Thats largely their prerogative, however:

    – Does the CPC really want to cling onto the past? They would likely be able to successfully fundraise off the glory days from their existing base, but tying the post-government CPC closer to the identity of the previous leader doesn’t seem healthy for the future of the party.

    – Harper was/is popular amongst core Conservatives, he doesn’t do much to help the CPC expand its donor base with moderate/red-tories.

    – While it may be flattering for Harper, does he really want to be used as a marketing tool for the CPC? Ideally, a former leader would like to be a elder-statesmen for the party and someone who is revered and consulted on big picture issues facing the party, but he’s technically out of politics and this would make it seem like the he’s just hovering around like a cloud.

    – Touching on what you said about successors; why would the CPC want to lay the ground for disappointment in the future leader of the CPC? If Harper is reinforced as a gold-standard for the party, it doesn’t allow for the new leader to emerge in their own way.

    All in all, its good for business but the CPC should probably be careful as to how entrenched one personality becomes within the party.

    • Scotian says:

      All good points, and I would add one more question. The CPC was literally the brainchild and construct of Harper himself. He is its father and arguably mother too (sorry Peter, you were a surrogate at best). The CPC and Harperism was soundly rejected by Canadians with an unusual degree of vehemence for us after 9 years. Harper wore the face of that government to the point where Harris wrote his book about it calling it Party of One, and I referred and still refer to that government as the Harperium because it was more run as if by Imperial fiat by Harper than any prior Canadian government of any persuasion I have ever seen before. IOW the CPC and Harper already have an unusually tight linkage in the minds of people, and that is something they have to consider for future electability beyond their own core base, since that base is clearly not enough on its own.

      Harper’s name, reputation, legacy, and I suspect negatives (outside his core fan base) will remain high for a much longer than usual period for an outgoing PM. The CPC is trying to rebrand and get a new leader so they can return to power, yet if they are still too closely linked in some manner to Harper beyond the historical, with anything post his PMship, they could be risking a great deal of potential negative reaction, especially if used effectively for such by another party against them and whomever becomes the next leader.

      I do not have a problem with the idea if that is what the CPC wants, it is, after all, their party. I do see though more than a few problems and potential openings for opponents of the CPC in any form that can come out of this decision though, especially if Kenney wins in Alberta down the road. I have always acknowledged Harper’s skills where he has them, I’ve disliked his usage of them, but I always noted them. Whether access to those skills, and his image, is of enough value to offset the almost certain negative association hits that come with using Harper so soon relatively speaking after his removal from power, before a new leader is even elected within the party, that is a whole other question in itself. One the CPC must find its own answer for, same as the Libs did following Ignatief. For in terms of long term drag effect I thin Harper could be worse than Ignatief, but if not worse, at least as bad.

      I wouldn’t recommend it in their shoes, but that is me.

  3. Tiger says:


    If my guys elect Max Bernier, you’ll see the skills he has. Firm principles, well thought-out policy, and charisma.

    Trudeau’s a favourite to win a second majority, but we can make him work for it. And given a lucky break or two, maybe we can take ’em down. 🙂

    • Kelly says:

      But his ideas are terrible. Nobody wants to live in an Ayn Rand novel. He would impoverish half the country so the 1% can be expanded to the 2%.

      • Tiger says:

        I think his ideas are great, you think they’re terrible.

        Sounds like the sort of thing elections should be fought over.

  4. Ridiculosity says:

    Stephen Harper: Just Not Ready for Retirement

  5. P. Brenn says:

    its about the money – he can raise it

  6. JH says:

    Surprising that partisans on a partisn Liberal site, would not agree with this. Then again, not sure they’d agree with anything the CPC did. Oh well. that’ll surely end the effort.

    • Charlie says:

      How do you know that every dissenting opinion posted here is of a partisan/Liberal intention?

      Can’t someone provide a thoughtful assessment that is critical of something without it dwindling down to “you’re either with us, or against us”? It is possible that one can look at something objectively and offer insight.

      Also, why are you on this site if you’re irked by the nature of the content?

      • daveconstable says:

        I come on here to read and sometimes comment so as to gently guide liberals and conservatives tot a better world.

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