Election overkill

(Canscene) — October 11th and the Toronto Star’s headline was “Mr. Nice Makes History.” Meaning of course, that Dalton McGuinty and his Ontario Liberal Party had won back-to-back majorities — the first for his party since the 1930s.

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Searching for the causes of the PC’s defeat, one can find other reasons beside the universally attributed religious school funding proposal. This, it is widely believed, was a clear factor in John Tory’s defeat which included a personal loss to the Ontario minister of education in the riding he contested. But Tory had other liabilities, not the least being the Harrris-Eves Legacy. And……..

Remember those television commercials back in ‘93 showing Jean Chretien’s face at a disadvantage during the federal election campaign? The message was “would you vote for this man?” They contributed substantially to an ignominious defeat for Kim Campbell and her (then) Progressive Conservative party and a huge majority for Jean Chretien and his Liberals.

Directing the Progresssive Conservative campaign in ‘93 was the man who would vie for premiership of Ontario on October 10 last. Once again, in 2007, whether self-directed or at his advisors’ recommendation, Tory endorsed a similar strategy.

His flip-flop on the funding of religious schools may have added to his defeat but even before the campaign began, Tory was on the attack against Dalton McGuinty neglecting to emphasize his party’s own platform. I was on the receiving end of negative e-mails several times daily, which eventually I asked to be stopped.

At the televised debate, McGuinty stood his ground firmly and unfazed at the pit-bull attacks of both John Tory and NDP leader Howard Hampton.

And to their detriment, both these opposition parties were so lost in their attack tactics they neglected to give substantial, positive information on their programs.

Who was it said “nice guys finish last?”
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