Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Cons in '06: Slow And Steady Progress

Sometimes I live as if there's no tomorrow
So far so good

I better find a way to cross my fingers
Half the luck'll get me twice as far

So far the conservatives have lead both campaign weeks with specific and clear policy messages while Martin is playing catch up recklessly:
The Liberals pledged $5 billion for child care over five years during the 2004 election campaign. Today, Martin said a Liberal-led government would make child care a permanent part of Canada's social benefits system.

To that end, Martin said the Liberals would commit an additional $6 billion to child care when the first allotment runs out in 2009 -- increasing the Liberals' commitment to $11 billion through 2015.
For a guy who built his rep on fiscal responsibility, this doesn't help.

Meanwhile, Harper hits the Liberals in one other area they can't argue with:
A tough-talking Harper turned his attention to fish on Tuesday, saying he would partly reopen the cod fishery and use force if necessary to prevent foreign overfishing.

Harper told fishermen in Petty Harbour, Nfld., that a Tory government would take control of fisheries beyond Canada’s 200-mile limit if countries continue to ignore limits set by the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization.

This is key for two reasons:
1. First of all, Harper has to show that he can get tough on internationally asserting our sovereignty because there is an impression he might be too soft in standing up to the US on Softwood. I'd hope he actually does come up with an alternative to "falling in line" with the US on that issue, but that's for another time.
2. By anyone's count, the Liberals have done a piss-poor job managing DFO, as the protests on the westcaost this summer demonstrated. What can the Liberals say abou this idea? They've had all kinds of time to help both the westcoast and eastcoast fisheries during their 12 years, and nothing has improved. This can only improve the Cons chances on both coasts, and especially in BC's suburban lower mainland.
While the polls don't reflect the excellent control of the debate, this kind of campaigning will payoff by election day.
Life ain't a track meet
It's a marathon
--Ice Cube

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