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Tory Releases New Attack Ads

"Dalton McGuinty said smog was responsible for over 1,900 deaths a year in Ontario so he promised to shut down all of our coal burning power plants. He's had four years to do so and still no action so that's 7,600 deaths and counting."

"...paid for by the Ontario PC Party"
The good news is that Tory's people didn't stoop to 1993 as I feared. The PC's also finally decided to put their leader in their own ads, something the Liberals have been doing with Dalton since before the campaign kicked off.

The bad news is that Tory has been criticized for being too negative and is desperately struggling to appeal to women voters and well these ads probably won't do much to change those facts.

The TV ads focus on autism, crime, economy and coal plant closures. The radio ads, well someone should be fired over those things:"Me too"?? I wrote better ads in college.

Tory's ads not only suggest that Dalton McGuinty's policies are responsible for 7,600 deaths (even though the coal plants aren't the only source of smog nor is all of Ontario's smog generated right here in Ontario) but one of his radio ads smacks of shrewd personal bitterness.
"Dalton McGuinty was open to the idea of extending funding to faith base schools beyond the catholic system -- where he was a student, where he sends his kids and where his wife coincidentally teaches..."
Laaaaaaaaame! (Not to mention the fact that the McGuinty children are no longer in the Catholic system!)

Every single TV and radio ad is a slam against McGuinty. Almost all of the radio ads lack a single policy idea or plan by John Tory.

His campaign is hurting in part because of negativity. Down with less than two weeks to go or entering the 'final period' as Tory said yesterday, why not change the game plan a bit?

Three other PC radio ads feature Tory supporters phoning up "Dalton McGuinty" and giving him an earful over his broken promises but it turns out that all three Tory supporters phoned the wrong "Dalton McGuinty" -- some plumber guy with the same name and made the guy feel rotten. They're supposed to be funny but I think they highlight incompetence.

Some of the acting (I will not suggest for certain that they were all actors) in the TV ads will instantly make people giggle. I mean the PC's themselves seem to be making a joke out of the ads. In the transcripts it describes women and men "looking directly into the camera" yet they appear to be gazing off talking to someone else.

Can John Tory look directly into the camera and tell us how he would come up with his proposed $1.5-billion in "efficiencies" within the provincial government.

Maybe that's why the set designers included this nifty pie chart which shows John Tory's support.Tonight John Tory debates Liberal Education Minister Kathleen Wynne in their home riding of Don Valley West. What a showdown that could turn into.

There is going to be a lot of media at this event and if Wynne can deliver a good debate, things could get ugly behind the scenes at Tory headquarters.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Uh oh! Tory making "Hail Mary" Ads

Earlier this week, Tory was shooting a new set of TV commercials, which are likely to appear soon and be more aggressive than the collection of relatively bland ads the three major parties have released so far.

Campaign observers figure that Tory’s best remaining chance is to send out tougher messages on the Liberal record of broken promises, but even that, they say, might be too little too late.
Right, because showing a sick child or a memorial for a murdered teenage woman wasn't "tough" or "aggressive" enough?

One has to wonder what is in the wings and waiting to hit Ontario airwaves any moment now. Late in the election campaign, pundits predicting a Liberal win, nothing is sticking with voters and a leader that is failing to inspire people -- the year "1993" has to be on the minds of those close to John Tory right now.

Will the ads be nasty? Will they focus on John Tory's record? Will they focus on McGuinty's record or will they sink to levels not seen since 1993 when John Tory himself was responsible for Canada's most cruel election attack ad?

"Not only were the ads unsustainable, but we gave our opponents a huge club to beat us with. To use the football metaphors so beloved by John Tory, I realized that we were losing with seconds left in the game, but (this) 'Hail Mary' pass was neatly intercepted by Chr├ętien's line, 'God made me this way.' I was disgusted. I instructed that the ads be pulled as soon as possible. John and Allan were furious, but no more so than I," former Prime Minister Kim Campbell wrote in her memoirs about the ads mocking Jean Chretien's face.

The next few plays by John Tory will likely be his final 'Hail Mary'. However, I think it's fair to predict that it will be other references to religion that will have defeated Tory's dream team.

Friday, September 28, 2007

New Poll Devastating for Tory

Asked if there was any good news for the Conservatives in the poll, (Ipsos Reid's senior vice president John) Wright responded with a blunt, "No."
Liberal - 43% (+3)
Conservative - 33% (-4)
NDP - 17% (+1)
Green - 6% (-)
Undecided - 5%

*Bracket numbers are the change from the last Ipsos-Reid poll on Sept 18th.

This is "majority territory" and with less than two weeks to go, these numbers are as scary for John Tory as some of his campaign ads are for voters.

Liberal numbers have not been this high in an Ipsos-Reid poll since just after the party booted Ernie Eves out of government in 2003.

According to this poll, the Progressive Conservatives are getting decimated in Liberal and NDP-friendly northern Ontario and are letting key battleground ridings slip away.

According to DemocraticSPACE, the Conservatives are seeing the Liberals take leads in key ridings like Ottawa-West Nepean, Lambton-Kent-Middlesex and Ottawa-Orleans. Those are just three of the ridings the PC's had hoped to scoop up from the McGuinty Liberals.

Even more alarming for PC's... DemocraticSPACE is showing the Conservatives fighting to hang on to seats against Liberal and NDP challengers. Ridings like Oak Ridges-Markham, Oshawa and Mississauga South.

Tory's room for growth numbers are looking very poor as well.
A measure of the Conservative weakness is that the party now ranks last as the second choice of voters, behind even the Green party. The NDP has the greatest second-choice support at 26 per cent, but only 15 per cent name the Tories as their second choice.

"The Tories are at the bottom of the list," Wright said. "It's remarkable."
What has gone wrong for Tory? (Like anxious students on the first day of class, thousands of Ontarians raise their hand to answer that question.)

The Liberals and NDP appear on track to hold onto almost all of their key ridings, with only one government minister facing an uphill fight, according to DemocraticSPACE.

That minister is Education Minister Kathleen Wynne (Don Valley West) who is in a tooth and nail battle against PC Leader John Tory.

What if Tory doesn't win his own seat?

What would be a stronger statement -- the opposition leader not winning his own seat or every government minister voted back to Queen's Park?

The only good news for PC's is that the election wasn't held when this polling data was collected. There's still time to make a change. There's still time to turn the tide and there's still time to ... oh, I don't know, be a little bit more positive on the campaign trail!

The other good news for Tory is that it's not uncommon or career ending for an opposition leader to be handed a majority loss in their first election campaign, just ask Dalton McGuinty and look where he is tonight -- combing over some rather positive polling data.

Letter to my federal Liberal friends

Dear Federal Liberal dudes in suits makin' the big bucks,

Do you want to lose the next federal election? How about see a Conservative majority?

Do you want to bankrupt the party into oblivion and hand the keys to Canada over to Steve and his boys?

If you do -- I suggest you continue with your school yard crap.

I suspect you don't want the above to happen. So it's time to grow up, suck it up and work together.

I pay the annual membership fee, I attended the last convention and vote in every nomination/election and give what I can at the grassroots level. It's time to listen to the grassroots.

Right now those people are telling you to get your shit in order.



Thursday, September 27, 2007

Tory gets earful in Sarnia

Oh, how I miss where I grew up... and where I studied in a great public education system.

They just QUIT?!?! That's it?

The head of a national pro-family organization says it's time to ditch the fight against gay marriage and push instead for tax breaks and other incentives to make marriage and child rearing more attractive options.
Fair enough but why did they throw in the towel?
Dave Quist, executive director of the Institute of Marriage and Family Canada, said Thursday he has become less concerned about same-sex marriage since census figures released earlier this month demonstrated how rare gay marriage is.
Are you kidding me? I think it has more to do with the fact that, despite what they tried to tell us, the gay apocalypse has yet to strike.

Seriously, they quit because same sex marriage isn't that popular? So they were only fighting tooth and nail all those years because they were concerned that every Tom, Dick and Harry (and Sally) from St. John's to Tofino was going to suddenly turn gay, line up at the altar and get married after the legislation passed?

I thought they were in this fight because it was a matter of principal, not numbers.

They've just finally realized that it's a losing battle and Canadians have accepted this issue. Unfortunately, the Institute of Marriage and Family Canada can't admit that publicly.

So if you're in a common-law relationship, look out they're coming after you next.
Quist said the institute is now more concerned about the increasing popularity of common-law relationships in Canada, and that it would rather spend its time and resources encouraging measures to strengthen the institutions of marriage and the family.
The Institute of Marriage and Family Canada can't even win a battle against 7,465 same-sex couples, I wish them all the best in their next crusade ... limiting the rights of 1,376,865 common-law couples!!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Randy Hillier responds... insults

So eloquent...
-----Original Message-----
From: Randy Hillier
Sent: Tue Sep 25 21:45:05 2007
Subject: corrections

Although I was detained once for trespassing, I've never been charged or
convicted of any criminal action. Please correct your news story.
PS I led tractor demonstrations on the 400 series far more often then 3
- you should hire a new fact checker or call me.
Your liberal war room hack and local patsy - (DELETED BECAUSE RANDY
to you when he can't get basic facts straight.

Keep trying
Tel 613-267-8239
It's odd because it was John Tory who made the gaffe about Randy Hillier yet it was Randy Hillier who responds.

The PC train wreck chugs along.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Tory on Hillier: 'Huh? Really?'

The following is a transcript found at Are You Kidding Me? and The Steel City Grit. It's an interview with PC Leader John Tory on CBC Radio. The juicy stuff is at the bottom.

CBC HOST: Let's go to Frontenac County. John is on the line. Hi John.

CALLER: Well, John, I've got this issue. You've got Randy Hillier running here in LFL&A [Lanark-Frontenac- Lennox and Addington] and when he was head of the LLA and that's the Lanark Landowners Association for the rest of the province. He closed down the 401 three times. Once in London, once in Thousand Islands then the QEW when he did his tractor day to Queen's Park there. He gets invited to be candidate for the PC party, Shawn Brant does it once and he's in jail for two months without bail. And I see a degree of hypocrisy there. One rule for the white guy and one rule for the natives. Can you explain that?

JOHN TORY: I, I, I could do my best because I could tell you this much.

CALLER: Without the double-speak.

JOHN TORY: There won't be any double-speak. When Mr. Hillier was the head of the landowners and I was the leader of the PC Party and he had expressed no interest or had not approached us about being a candidate. I can tell you that I telephoned him before his first protest at which time he said he was going to block the highway and encouraged him not to do that, urged him not to do that. I said, look you can have the same protest by the side of the highway and in fact you'll see more people because they'll go by you as opposed to blocking the highway off. And I have said consistently, when it comes to what I've said about the rule of law for people who are obstructing highways or anything else, the law should apply to everyone. And I specifically mentioned the day I first took that position and laid out one rule of law for everybody that it applied to groups of farmers. I mentioned that. Or groups of environmentalists. Or groups of Aboriginal people. And so I've been very very consistent in that and Mr. Hillier would tell you that, I've phoned him and I've communicated with him any time he was going to do any protest of that kind and said don't do that there are other ways to protest without blockading highways. With respect to how he became the candidate, in our Party, the PC party, the candidates are elected democratically at the riding level. So Mr. Hiller came forward and put his name in and I think there were three or four candidates who ran for the nomination and he won.

CALLER: You don't vet these people at all.

JOHN TORY: I'll be very truthful with you about that. No double-speak. They’re all vetted to see if there is anything in their background in terms of brushes with the law or any of those kinds of things that would disqualify them form being a candidate it's done before the nomination process so that you don't, it's not too late and we looked at his entire background and I can tell you this man has had no brushes with the law.

CALLER: Whoa, back up. Back up. He's been incarcerated before.

JOHN TORY: Look at that, if that is true, I'm not familiar with that but I mean I can tell you there was a check on his background. What was he incarcerated for?

CALLER: I believe in the Cornwall incident.

JOHN TORY: Well, that's news to me.

CBC HOST: I'm just going to intervene here. We do want to get to some other callers as well. Thank you John for your inquiry.

No brushes with the law John? Your people looked into his past and didn't tell you about anything involving an incarceration? Nothing?

From the Ottawa Sun on May 17th, 2006
Hillier was arrested by Cornwall Police at the NavCan Centre in the city's east end, detained and ticketed $50 for trespassing.
What else haven't your people told you?

My gosh, the Globe & Mail wrote about his arrest as recent as 12 days ago!

Hillier is far and away Tory's most controversial candidate in this election. Tory and his handlers had to have known that Tory was going to be questioned about Hillier's past at some point during the campaign.


Harper setting the bar

I suspect he's just aiming low and hoping to fire high.

Stephen Harper says the possibility of another minority government is "very high".

It's an interesting strategy. Set the expectations low and not be over confident. It might work for Harper as he tries to sell his party once more to Canadian voters.

However, I suspect he is hoping this strategy of setting low expectations does work. Really hoping. Not so much for his party but for his own political career.

Stephane Dion can afford to hold the Conservatives to a slim minority government once but I question how well that would sit with Conservatives. Harper would have been leader through four elections by that point.

Anything short of a near majority or a majority itself would likely be seen by most people as a disappointing reflection on Harper's leadership skills. Four elections, no majority.

Harper is just setting the tone right now for the possibility of failure because another Conservative minority would be considered just that -- a failure. Not for his party but rather his ability to lead his party.