Debates, round two, part one

For those of you living under a rock or at least not next door to a war room, the second English debate is tonight, and this will be one of the more important moments of the campaign. All the pundits seem to agree that the Conservatives have been doing significantly better than the Liberals at playing the campaign game, in terms of the little things like chosing what time of day to send out press releases and which photo op to set up with which policy announcement. These things go a long way to winning elections, I’m afraid… the same pundits say we’ve been doing a better job than the Liberals too, so we feel pretty good about that. Then again, the Liberals, many of whom seem to have been going out of their way to damage the campaign, have yet to conclude their internal civil war which lead to Martin assuming leadership. Their cabinet ministers keep contradicting each other on major talking points, and it seems like every week another sitting MP gets investigated by the RCMP. All of this means that Harper will be walking into the debates with a target painted on his head, so tonight should be interesting to watch as each leader tries to score points of the others, except of course Duceppe, who gets to sit back and relax as hardly any of his supporters or potential supporters will be tuning in tonight. He definitely has the easiest job during this race, since he only has to keep a small number of electors happy.

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Some local newspaper wants us to send them someone to talk policy with representatives from the other parties and a panel of undecided voters – in a spa, while everyone is getting backrubs and taking turns in the hot tub. What has Canadian politics sunk to, that this reporter thinks no-one will read an article about an election coming up in two weeks unless everyone’s in their bathing suits? Have we really gotten to the point where your tan is as important as your statistics? Then again, I suppose some might say we’ve been there for a while. sigh…

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While working here I’ve met Monia Mazigh, better known in some circles as the wife of Maher Arar. I knew she ran for the NDP in the 2004 election, but I didn’t realize she was working in the office. What an amazing woman… too bad she didn’t win, but she did get the NDP their best showing ever in a traditional Liberal stronghold. She’s decided not to run again this time around, however.