With the Conservatives at or on the edge of a majority government and the New Democrats threatening to capture official opposition status from the Liberals, Michael Ignatieff and his Liberal team are showing signs of desperation.
The Tories are at 39.2 per cent nationally in the Nanos poll and at 47.8 per cent support in Ontario. It’s worth remembering that the last time there was a majority in parliament, Jean Chrétien won it (155 seats) with a mere 38.5 per cent of the popular vote. With a favourable split in the vote on May 2, Stephen Harper could very well duplicate that feat.
In a one-minute spot, called “The Loonie,” Liberals describe Stephen Harper and Jack Layton as “career politicians” and place them on two sides of a spinning coin. The ad warns that Harper will give public dollars to banks and oil companies, and predicts Layton would “jack up” taxes to pay for $70-billion in new spending. The ad also digs deep into the past to mine criticism, but stops just short of accusing these men of beating their wives.
According to the Liberal-leaning Globe and Mail, “a Liberal Party volunteer has been dismissed after removing Green Party campaign flyers from mailboxes and replacing them with Liberal materials while door-knocking with Toronto incumbent Joe Volpe [emphasis mine].” And, apparently, Orla Hegarty, Green candidate Paul Baker’s volunteer campaign manager, took photographs of the Liberal volunteer removing Green literature, and claims that Mr. Volpe also removed Green Party pamphlets from mailboxes and replaced them with Liberal materials. Unfortunately, however, she did not manage to photograph him doing so.
Desperate times demand desperate actions, or, apparently, so the Grits believe.