Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Canadian SSM Posturing

Quickly into the fray, Canadian politicians started their campaign for the January 23rd elections yesterday. To wit:
  • Tory Leader Stephen Harper vowed to restore one man/one woman marriage to the nation. Apparently he knows that crap, but he sees it as a good talking point and a way to pick up extra Conservative MPs in the election.
  • His other pointy stick is the Liberal Party's recent history of misusing funds. This may provide better sound bites, as in elect Tories because "a government paralyzed by scandal cannot attend to important business." That has the wonderful irony of the Conservatives spending most of their effort to try to bring the government down instead of tending to important business.
  • The NDP wants something from everyone and anyone. Leader Jack Layton says the Liberals didn't give up enough, leading to the election. He wants to convert Liberal seats to NDP ones to get more influence.
  • Bloc Québécois Leader Gilles Duceppe was more colorful, accusing Liberal PM Paul Martin of continuing to "practice patronage and camouflage." He wants to solidify the Bloc's lead in his province, thus getting more consideration.
  • Martin is playing cool for the moment, saying his party won't hit the voters hard over the holidays, "(w)hen Canadians sit down to sip hot chocolate..." he blamed the opposition for an unnecessary election — "Ambition has overwhelmed common sense."
Liberals still lead in most polls, but do not have a majority and will have to deal to keep the government. If the party wants a simple majority, it would have to improve results in Quebec.

The numbers will certainly shift. At present, there are two vacancies out of 308. Liberals have 133, Conservatives 98, Bloc 53, NDP 18 and independents 4.

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