Jack Layton

10 Years of Blogging

Posted on by CalgaryGrit in Featured Posts, Federal Politics | 8 Comments
Happy Trails

Happy Trails

Back when I first sat down to rant about politics on May 15th 2004, I never expected I’d still be doing this over 3,000 posts later. The blog has outlasted 3 Liberal leaders, been through 4 federal elections, and documented my involvement on a handful of losing leadership campaigns. During that time, Bart Ramson turned into Dan Arnold, I moved to Edmonton, finished school, and became a “Toronto Grit”. Shortly thereafter, Naheed Nenshi became mayor of Calgary and Rob Ford became mayor of Toronto. Go figure.

Nenshi and Ford have provided me with bountiful amounts of blogging material, but they have not been alone. There was the Michael Ignatieff experiment, on which so much virtual ink was spilled. There was the coalition crisis, which gripped the nation. There was the rise of the Wildrose Party, which led to the rarest of things – an exciting Alberta election. There was the orange wave. And, through it all, there was still time to poke fun at Politicians in Cowboy hatsand leather vests.

Another source for much blog content has been Justin Trudeau, but he is also the reason content has been, and will continue to be, scarce here. I’ve recently started working for the Liberal Party which, needless to say, limits what I’m able to write about. And really, what’s the point of blogging if I don’t have Rob Anders to kick around anymore.

You may still find the occasional retrospective or Pierre Poilievre rant, but this site will be taking a breather from deeper political analysis, at least until after the next election.

So a big thank you to everyone for reading over the years. I’ve always been in awe of the high caliber of discussion in the comments section of this site, and have appreciated the e-mails. As vain as it is to count clicks, the fact that I knew people were reading certainly motivated me to keep at it for a decade. So, to everyone, thank you.

I leave you with a list of 10 of my favourite posts from over the years. These aren’t necessarily the most viewed or the best posts – just 10 that I had a lot of fun writing.

1. Follow the Leader: I only include this post as a humbling reminder about how unpredictable politics can be, and how wrong I’ve been on many occasions. Just one year before Paul Martin’s resignation I provided odds on 13 possible Liberal leadership contenders without listing Stephane Dion, Bob Rae, or Gerard Kennedy. I do mention Michael Ignatieff, but only in what may have been the most awesomely off-the-mark sentence in the history of this blog – and I quote – “This week, we saw Peter C. Newman toot Michael Ignatieff’s name which is interesting because that’s about as serious a suggestion as Justin Trudeau”. Heh.

2. Greatest Prime Minister: In a March Madness style contest, blog readers voted for Wilfrid Laurier as Canada’s Greatest Prime Minister. This begat a series of other contests including “Best Premier”, “Best Prime Minister We Never Had”, “Biggest Election”, and, coming this summer, “Best Minister of Natural Resources”.

3. The Race for Stornoway: 2006 was really the heyday for political blogging. From the “Draft Paul Hellyer” movement, to candidate interviews, to the blogging room at the convention itself, blogging was as close to “cool” as it would ever be.

4. A Beginner’s Guide to Alberta Politics: For some reason, I seemed to blog a lot more about Alberta politics after I left Alberta.

5. Christmas LettersElizabeth May, Jack Layton, Michael Ignatieff, Stephen Harper. People, myself included, take politics way too seriously sometimes. So it’s good to have some fun with it.

PS. Ed Broadbent.

6. Leadership Power Rankings (here, here, and here). The wonderful thing about politics is how unpredictable, complicated, and human it is. That’s why I love the challenge of trying to quantify it.

7. Moments of Decade: Hopefully I’m blogging again by 2020, because this is an exercise I’d dearly love to repeat. Readers nominated and voted on the top political moments of the decade, with the Alliance-PC merger topping the list. It wasn’t as exciting as the coalition crisis or the Belinda Stronach Chuck Cadman confidence vote insanity, but it set the stage for the rise of Stephen Harper.

8. On October 6th vote for proper scaling of the Y-Axis. Vote Liberal. Tim Hudak math burn!

9. What’s the Matter with Calgary? Having lived in both Calgary and Toronto, I’ve always been absolutely fascinated by the Nenshi-Ford dichotomy. Elected a week apart, these men are opposites with so much in common, who both shattered their cities’ stereotypes. When I first moved to Toronto, a lot of lefties would shake their head and “tsk tsk” when I said I was from Calgary. Not any more.

10. Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Census (But Were Afraid to Ask): I’ve never been of the opinion that Stephen Harper is a monster who has destroyed Canada beyond recognition. Even on issues where we disagree – the gun registry, climate change, Quebec as a nation – I understand where he’s coming from. However, of everything Harper has done, his decision to scrap the long form census remains the thing that boils my blood. Here was the party who sends Happy Hanukkah cards to swing voters calling the census too “intrusive”. It wasn’t an assault on the welfare state or big government, it was an assault on reason. It showed that Harper offered nothing more than government by truthiness.

And that, is why I’ll be taking a break from blogging for the next bit to help defeat him.

Canada’s Greatest Losers

Posted on by CalgaryGrit in --- 2013 LPC Leadership Race, Featured Posts, History | 7 Comments

Liberals elected this loser at their 1919 leadership convention

Last week, Martha Hall Findlay and Karen McCrimmon declared their candidacies for the Liberal leadership race. This week, George Takach has taken the plunge. I’ve posted one blog interview with David Merner, and will have others with David Bertschi and Alex Burton next week. Deborah Coyne, meanwhile, has already released more fresh ideas than we’ve seen from Stephen Harper during his entire tenure as Prime Minister.

These are seven very different candidates with seven very different messages, but the one thing they share in common is that none of them hold a seat in the House of Commons. This has prompted Warren Kinsella (and others) to gently suggest they do us all a favour and drop out, before they jump in. As the saying goes, if you can’t win your own riding, you can’t win the country.

Now, Warren is free to support whomever he chooses using whatever criteria he chooses. And as far as criteria go, electoral track record is a pretty important one to consider. I know I’d have a difficult time supporting anyone who has never held elected office. That said, it’s likely worth looking at a few “losers” from history, before we automatically disqualify every “loser” from consideration.

John Diefenbaker: This guy could put together losing campaigns more consistently than the Toronto Maple Leafs. Before being elected, he lost twice federally, twice provincially, and once for Mayor. Despite being a five-time loser, the Tories went with Dief in ’56, and he rewarded them with the largest majority in Canadian history.

Mackenzie King: Even though he lost his seat in both the 1911 and 1917 elections, the Liberals put their faith in King at Canada’s first leadership convention in 1919. King would go on to become the longest serving PM in Commonwealth history…losing his own seat twice more along the way.

Jack Layton: Jack beat out three candidates with seats at the 2003 NDP leadership convention, even though he’d never been elected to any position higher than Councillor. He’d lost in his bid for Mayor, finished fourth in the 1993 federal election, and lost by over 7,000 votes in the 1997 federal election. Despite this track record of defeat, the Dippers went with Jack and he rewarded them by becoming the NDP’s most successful leader ever.

Brian Mulroney: Brian hadn’t even won a City Council election when he became PC leader, and had lost in his previous leadership bid. In his first ever election, he won over 200 seats.

Jean Chretien, Paul Martin, John Turner: Although they had perfect records in their own ridings, all three lost a leadership race before becoming Liberal leader. Losers.

Stephen Harper: Harper did not hold a seat when he ran for Canadian Alliance leadership in 2002. At that time, he had a rather uninspiring “1 win and 1 loss” record when it came to local elections – and remember, that’s a .500 record from a Calgary conservative.

Those are just a few of the many losers who won their party leaderships. Indeed, the only examples from the past 30 years of national parties electing “winners” who had never lost their riding or a leadership race are Stephane Dion, Audrey McLaughlin, Stockwell Day, and Peter MacKay. MacKay killed his party, and the other three almost did.

That’s not to say that all “winners” become “losers”, but you need to go all the way back to Justin Trudeau’s father in 1968 to find a successful leader who had a perfect electoral record when he first took over his party’s leadership. And while I don’t want to dismiss Pierre Trudeau’s accomplishments, I suspect most barnyard animals could have held Mount Royal for the Liberals in 1965.

The above examples come from federal politics, but we see it everywhere. Just eight years before becoming President, Barack Obama lost a primary race for a congressional seat by a 2:1 margin. Alison Redford couldn’t even beat Rob Anders in a nomination meeting.

So while I wouldn’t dismiss a candidate’s electoral record (or lack thereof), it’s important to remember that a lot of winners have quickly turned into losers, and a lot of losers have gone on to have very successful careers.

Vote Out Anders – Part 84

Posted on by CalgaryGrit in Federal Politics | 2 Comments

Only Rob Anders has this theory, because he pays closer attention to the House of Commons than anyone else.

At least when Rob Anders is sleeping, he can’t say anything too offensive:

And so, [Anders] has a theory.

“I actually think one of the great stories that was missed by journalists was that Mr. Mulcair, with his arm twisted behind the scenes, helped to hasten Jack Layton’s death,” he said.

“It was very clear to me watching the two of those gentlemen in the front benches, that Jack Layton was ill and that Mr. Mulcair was making it quite obvious that if Jack wasn’t well enough to fight the campaign and fight the election that he should step aside, and that because of that, Mr. Layton put his life at risk to go into the national election, and fight it, and did obviously an amazing job considering his state of health, and that he did that partly because of the arm-twisting behind the scenes by Mulcair and then subsequently died.”

The Dog Days of Summer

Posted on by CalgaryGrit in by elections, Federal Politics, Ontario Politics, Quebec Politics | 1 Comment

Pauline Marois will make Quebecers long for the tolerant Premiership of Jacques Parizeau

With politicians away from Ottawa and politics the last thing on the minds of Canadians, the summer news cycle usually slows to a crawl. Short of extraordinary events – war, disaster, or the great Census crisis of 2010 – politicians are content to stay on the back pages of the newspaper, and Canadians are more than happy to keep them there.

At least normal Canadians are. Those of us with an unhealthy addiction to politics need something to talk about at BBQs, now that the Jays have fallen out of contention. During the minority years, you could count on an interesting poll and a fresh round of election speculation every week. Now that we’re in a majority, the best we can do is work ourselves into a lather over Harper’s “monumental” Cabinet shuffle, then act surprised when, as has been the case with every single Cabinet shuffle Harper has ever done, it failed to live up to the hype.

Still, there are some news stories floating around as the summer comes to close. Among them:

1. Quebecers will head to the polls in under 2 weeks, and there are still three candidates with a legitimate chance at being Premier when the dust settles. The most likely, despite what today’s bizarre Forum poll suggests, is Pauline Marois, who is catering to the rawest, most hateful forms of human emotion to get herself elected. She would prevent francophones from attending English CEGEPs. She would forbid employees in public institutions from wearing religious symbols, hijabs, and turbans (but not crucifixes). She would ban anyone who does not pass a French test from running for office. While I agree not being able to speak French is a liability for an elected official in Quebec, so is being a racist, and there’s (obviously) no law against them running for office.


2. Two days after the Quebec election, voters in Kitchener-Waterloo and Vaughan will decide whether or not to hand Dalton McGuinty his third majority government, after a year of minority probation. Given Tim Hudak shows no interest in keeping the government afloat, and the Liberal-NDP marriage seems about as solid as a typical Kardashian marriage, it likely won’t be long before all Ontarians head back to the polls if the Liberals don’t sweep these two by-elections.


3. In slightly less exciting by-election news, the next Conservative MP for Calgary Centre will be chosen this Sunday. Daveberta provides the low-down on the candidates.


4. Today marks the one year anniversary of Jack Layton’s death. At the Globe, Brian Topp weighs in on what the NDP have done right (not being Conservatives) and what they’ve done wrong (not choosing Brian Topp as their leader) over the past year. Actually, Topp is quite gracious towards his former leadership rivals, but it is interesting to see him raise the issue of re-opening the constitution. In the midst of a Quebec election, no less.

Also marking the anniversary is a Harris-Decima poll, under the headline “New-look NDP not that different from the house that Jack built“. Of course, the poll says the exact opposite of that – for better or worse, only 8% of Canadians say the NDP of today is “very similar” to the Layton-led Party.

Happy Anniversary!

Posted on by CalgaryGrit in 2011 Federal Election, Federal Politics | Leave a comment

One year ago today, Stephen Harper turned an “unwanted election” into his first majority government, Jack Layton and the NDP soared to never before seen heights, and Liberals spent the evening curled up in a fetal position sobbing in the corner.

On political anniversaries, it’s tempting to give each party a thumbs up or thumbs down, but the past year has been less clear cut, as the major parties try to figure out where they fit in Canada’s new political dynamic.

The Conservatives

It feels like a “Harper majority” was hyped longer than the Phantom Menace – and the end result was just as much of a letdown. After years of being told by both the right and left that a Harper majority would mean an unrecognizable country, it turns out a Harper majority looks a lot like a Harper minority. I hardly think when people warned of his “hidden agenda”, abolishing the penny is what they had in mind.

So if the past year has proven anything, it’s that Stephen Harper has always been and always will be an incrementalist. He has made some changes – goodbye gun registry, so long Katimavik…CBC and Statscan, you can stay, but we’ll make your job a bit harder, in the hope the public begins to question your value. These are bigger changes than he made during the minority years, but the man isn’t reshaping Canada as we know it.

While none of those moves prompted a large backlash, there are storm clouds on the horizon. The F-35 fiasco could tarnish his reputation as a strong financial manager. A stagnant economy would speak directly against the ballot question he was elected on. Robocon could blow up in his face. Bev Oda is still in Cabinet, so that alone guarantees us a few hilarious screw ups.

Outlook: Harper survived year one of the majority unscathed, but he survived with Nicole Turmel as leader of the opposition. The next year will be harder than the last.

The NDP

The past 13 months have been the most turbulent in this “new” party’s long history, filled with highs, lows…and voting delays.

Jack Layton’s death was tragic, but life has gone on for the Dippers. Their leadership race may not have generated the excitement they hoped it would, but they came out of it with the only leader who has a realistic shot at ever living at 24 Sussex, so that’s a point in their column.

With the exception of a few easily forgotten floor crossings, their rookie caucus hasn’t been the embarrassment we thought it would be, so that’s another point for the boys in orange.

Outlook: Mulcair is in the midst of his leadership honeymoon, but he’s been treated to the kid gloves by the Conservatives so far. That’s going to change if Harper ever decides Mulcair is a legitimate threat.

The Liberals

On March 31st, Justin Trudeau knocked out Tory Senator Patrick Brazeau. There haven’t been many highlights over the other 365 days since election night.

That’s not to say Liberal rebuilding hasn’t gone on behind the scenes. The party picked a new president with a lot of good ideas. Today, the Liberals became Canada’s most open party by letting supporters register to vote for the leader. Liberals finally get that the party needs fixing, and I’ve been surprised at the number of new faces I’ve seen at events over the past year – people who joined the party after May 2nd, because they wanted to save it.

In front of the scenes, Rae has performed well in the interim leader’s role, but the “will he or won’t he” saga around his leadership has been a distraction.

Outlook: The next year will be all about leadership, as the Liberals pick the man or woman who will either oversee the party’s death or its return to relevance. No pressure, though.

The Bloc

Can’t say I miss them.

2011 Person of the Year

Posted on by CalgaryGrit in Featured Posts, Person of the Year | 1 Comment

As 2011 winds down, it’s time to pick a Calgary Grit Person of the Year for the 8th consecutive year. The criteria is simple – someone who made an impact on the Canadian political scene in 2011.

While I usually try to think outside the box on these picks, this year’s selection is about as obvious as they come. In effect, I think it’s the first time I’ve been on the same page as the Canadian Press. But before we get there, a few runner-ups.

In any other year, provincial politics would have been the story, as political junkies in nearly every province got their fix. In Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, PEI and Newfoundland, incumbent governments were returned to power in a series of fall elections that ranged from “boring” to “painfully boring”.

More exciting may have been the provinces who didn’t go to the polls. In British Columbia, Christy Clark become Premier by taking the BC Liberal leadership race over Kevin Fallon 52% to 48% on the third ballot. She promptly called a referendum where voters “extinguished” the HST.

In Alberta, you needed a program to keep track of the floor crossings, new parties, and surprise resignations. When the dust settled, Alison Redford emerged as Premier.

In Quebec, François Legault founded a new party and surged to first in the polls on his bold promise of not being Jean Charest or Pauline Marois.

So yes, Redford, Clark, McGuinty…a case could be made for any of them as the person of the year. Just not this year.

JACK LAYTON

There are few politicians who ever get the chance to go out on top. Sadly, Jack Layton did just that in 2011.

If we rewind back to the start of 2011, Ottawa was busy playing its favourite “will they or won’t they” game of election speculation. Between Bev Oda’s problem with “nots”, the Conservative Party’s problem with the rules of Parliament, and Bruce Carson’s problem with escorts, the opposition parties smelled blood in the water. The Liberals had made it clear they were ready to vote down the government and Gilles Duceppe, knowing he was guaranteed at least 40 seats in the subsequent campaign, was set to force an election unless Stephen Harper gave him $5 billion for equalization, a new hockey arena, and daily piggyback rides around the House of Commons. Harper said he didn’t want an “unnecessary election” but his eyes said “yes”.

So it was all up to Jack. Layton had often mocked the Liberals for propping up the Harper government, only he himself tended to come down with a case of “making Parliament work” every time the Liberals found a backbone. Complicating the situation was hip surgery that left him needing a cane to walk.

Layton ended all the speculation 5 minutes after Jim Flaherty’s budget speech, passing immediate judgment on the Harper government. We were off to the poll yet again, for what most figured to be a boring campaign with few surprises. The funny thing about surprises though, is that they tend to be unexpected, by definition.

So fast forward to April 12th, in a 70s-themed debate studio, when Jack Layton pulled off a tour de force. Barely able to stand without sweating a month earlier, Layton stood tall for two hours. Many of his lines were tacky – I rolled my eyes when he uttered “hash tag fail” and when he told Stephen Harper “you’ve changed, you used to care about the environment“. But he connected with voters, both in terms of style and content, and left Michael Ignatieff reeling when he brought up the Liberal leader’s less-than-exemplary attendance record. In 30 seconds, the great Michael Ignatieff experiment (and possibly the Liberal Party) was effectively over.

Layton was good the next night in Quebec, but he didn’t need to be. He’d already made waves cheering on the Habs at local bars and everyone in Quebec was talking about his performance on tout le monde en parle. Layton soon overtook the Bloc in Quebec and, par conséquent, the Liberals. From there, all he had to do was surf the orange wave to Stornoway.

So by May 2nd, it was already obvious Jack Layton would be the newsmaker of the year. He had taken the NDP to record heights and done what Ed Broadbent and Tommy Douglas could not.

You all know the rest of the story – the tragedy and the tributes – since it dominated the headlines in August and September. Even beyond the grave, Layton left his mark, with the NDP making gains in most provincial elections. His departure also launched the NDP leadership race, and made the Liberal and Bloc races somewhat more meaningful.

Although Jack is gone, he’ll continue to have a major impact on Canadian politics for years to come.

2010: Rob Ford and Naheed Nenshi
2009: Jim Flaherty
2008: Stephane Dion
2007: Jean Charest
2006: Michael Ignatieff
2005: Belinda Stronach
2004: Ralph Klein

Election Post Mortem: The NDP

Posted on by CalgaryGrit in 2011 Federal Election, Featured Posts, Federal Politics | Leave a comment


I don’t have much to add to the post-election discussion on the NDP’s past, present, and future, as most of the key points have already been beaten to death. But it’s worth a moment to pause and appreciate what Jack Layton accomplished last Monday. Layton inherited a party with 13 seats in the House of Commons, and took them to 19 seats…then to 27…then to 37. That, by itself, would have been impressive. Then, this election, he took a 50 year old party and not only led them to their best showing ever, he more than doubled their previous record of 43 seats.

Ten or twenty years from now, the words “Jack Layton” will appear under the NDP leader’s name on any Debate Bingo sheets or drinking game. Quite simply, Layton will now be a god to future New Democrats, the way Tommy Douglas currently is, and the way Ed Broadbent almost is. What he has accomplished cannot be understated in the least.

I start with this little ode to Jack, because the NDP’s success is owed entirely to him. I know that can be said of most parties in Canada, but this was a vote for Jack and Jack alone. And deservedly so, since his performance was masterful from start to finish.

I think back to the very first day of the campaign, when all three leaders faced difficult questions. The way they dealt with them foreshadowed what was to come. Harper simply refused to take questions. Ignatieff gave an incoherent answer to the coalition question, forcing him to clarify his position the next day. Layton faced difficult questions about his health with a smile and a joke – everyone seemed satisfied and that was the end of it.

And that was how Layton approached the entire campaign. NDP ads were as vicious and unfair as Liberal or Conservative ads, but they featured cartoons, and ended with Jack smiling and saying something that made you feel good about him. Every second word out of his mouth was an attack on Harper or Ignatieff, but he had a cheerful way of delivering his lines that made voters feel like he was running a positive campaign. In fairness, the other half of the words were positive, with promises to help seniors, hire doctors, and cut taxes. The math didn’t add up, but math doesn’t win elections.

The story was much the same during the debates. That was really when this campaign turned. His attacks were pointed and, unlike Ignatieff, they were on issues voters could relate to. Ignatieff’s attendance record may not have been the most important issue facing the country, but Layton put it in terms people could understand, leaving the Liberal leader stunned and speechless. In short, Layton gave voters everything they wanted in those debates – he looked like a fighter, he looked cool, he looked confident, and, most importantly, he showed how he’d make their lives a little easier. Voters started trickling his way soon afterwards and, once the people realized it was okay to vote NDP, the trickle turned into a torrent.

Layton’s biggest challenge in the coming years is to leverage his personal popularity to strengthen the NDP brand. After all, this was a vote for Jack, not a vote for the NDP – to form government and ensure the next NDP leader has a chance at forming government, Jack needs to get Canadians comfortable with the idea of voting for the NDP.

Doubts about the NDP’s ability to govern will only be heightened as his rookie caucus continues to make headlines for all the wrong reasons. After all, the media won’t be able to write election speculation stories any more, so the easiest way to get content for a column will be to stick a microphone in the face of one of the NDP rookies. Suffice to say, a crash course in media relations and the art of the “no comment” will be coming up.

Personally, I don’t have a problem with young MPs – it’s something we need more of, and it could actually prove to be a great way to get young Canadians interested in politics. I came within one floor crossing of being a placeholder candidate for the Liberals in 2005, so I’m open to the idea that these political rookies might actually be a breath of fresh air in Ottawa. If they handle themselves well, the media, and voters, will fall in love with them.

The larger concern for Layton is not so much the age of his MPs, it’s their beliefs. It wouldn’t at all surprise me if a dozen or two of the Layton Bunch are quasi-separatists, setting the stage for some very uncomfortable decisions in the years ahead. Layton’s position on the Clarity Act, Bill 101, and the Constitution is a ticking time bomb waiting to explode.

So there are challenges ahead for Layton and the NDP. If they look and sound like a government in waiting for the next four years, they might very well find themselves in power come 2015. If they don’t? Well, these gains could disappear as quickly as they materialized.

The 2011 Wet Tissue Election

Posted on by CalgaryGrit in 2011 Federal Election, Federal Politics | Leave a comment

Sadly, this is all people will be talking about over the final 3 days of the campaign:

TORONTO – Jack Layton was found laying naked on a bed by Toronto Police at a suspected Chinatown bawdy house in 1996, a retired Toronto police officer told the Toronto Sun.

The stunning revelation about the current leader of the New Democratic Party comes days before the federal election at a time when his popularity is soaring.

When the policeman and his partner walked into a second-floor room at the Toronto massage parlour, they saw an attractive 5-foot-10 Asian woman who was in her mid-20s and the married, then-Metro councillor, lying on his back in bed.

I can think of many reasons to not vote NDP, but this isn’t one of them. And I think most voters will agree.

At the start of the campaign, this might have subconsciously made voters think twice. After all, the optics certainly aren’t good for Layton, and it does speak to his character. But no one is going to change their mind over this now. We saw this in Toronto’s mayoral campaign last year, when revelations about Rob Ford’s past were just shrugged off by his supporters – and may have even made him more popular. We saw it with Bill Clinton in the 90s.

Like Clinton, Layton may also benefit from being seen as the victim. When a 15 year old story surfaces 3 days before E-Day at a time when the NDP is surging – and is broken by a media chain with a reputation as a right wing attack dog, it’s going to rub a lot of people the wrong way (no pun intended). As Andrew Coyne tweeted, “I’d rather be caught naked in a massage parlour than fully clothed working for SunNews“.

Layton hasn’t lied, there hasn’t been a coverup. In fact, being attacked on this plays right into Layton’s message of rising above the “smear tactics” that plague Canadian politics.

So, yes, Layton may still get his happy ending after all on Monday.

Ad Watch: Attacking Jack

Posted on by CalgaryGrit in 2011 Federal Election, Ads, Federal Politics | Leave a comment

Over the past week, the Liberals launched a pair of attack ads going after the NDP (and a new positive spot). I present the second here, asking for your comments and ratings.

Personally, I’m not so sure bringing up 2005 will do much for voters – it was 6 years ago, and I fail to grasp how the NDP/CPC defeating Martin is any different from the NDP/LPC defeating Harper. But I do love the “Jack up your taxes” line.



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Also out today is a new NDP ad staring Jack Layton and average Canadians. It’s a “close the sale” ad, and it’s a good one.

You can rate other campaign ads here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.

Why Stephen Harper should be afraid of Jack Layton

Posted on by CalgaryGrit in 2011 Federal Election, Federal Politics | Leave a comment

No, not because of the latest poll that has people somewhat prematurely speculating about Layton as Prime Minister.

Rather, Harper should be worried, because it turns out Jack is a better piano player than him. Now all we need is for Iggy to beat him in a hockey trivia contest, and the man’s spirit will be absolutely crushed beyond repair.

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