First and foremost let me say that, I am not quite sure what the Liberals were afraid of, but Micheal Ignatieff is more than up to the challenge of going head to head with Stephen Harper and any other political leader in Canada as far as I am concerned. Will he keep his promises once he gets elected is as hard to determine, but I doubt it. The campaign promises of any political party or leader at election time are never kept once the reality and the obstacles of delivering on those problems come into effect after the election. What is clear though from listening to Mr. Ignatieff and Mr. Harper is that Mr. Ignatieff can be no worse than what we have now in Mr. Harper. I have noticed during this campaign that Micheal Ignatieff is not afraid to give his opinion, or afraid to answer questions that have not been screened or that are not coming from, pre registered, friendly packed, pro Liberal audience. Take him or leave him , agree with him or not, he is not afraid to be challenged and answers each and every question put to him.
On the other side of the coin we have Mr. Harper who only has pre registered, Conservative friendly packed audiences in his town hall rallies, refuses to take questions after his speeches and has a talk only if what you are saying has been approved by him policy going on with the conservative Mps, running in this election, leaving the voter unsure of exactly what he and his party are offering except that it is more of the same as we got in the last 5 years of Conservative governing.. It now seems so phony and staged every time I see a standing ovation for Harper, or hear the chant of Harper, Harper. now that I know he stacked his audience. what satisfaction does it give when you know you had to stage it or at least felt you had to do it. Shows a little lack of confidence in yourself if you ask me.
I like the fact that Micheal Ignatieff was not afraid even in an election campaign to fire and denounce one of his chosen hopefuls when the candidate made racist remarks in public. I liked the fact that he made it clear that another of his hopefuls was not expressing the views of the Liberal Party of Canada when he made inappropriate comments about sexual assaults. This in my belief takes a certain amount of courage and a willingness to put what is right before your own political ambitions. One may argue that he should have known about this guy from the start, or that he did not go far enough in the case of the judge, but no one can argue that he defended them, or ignored his responsibility for them and took definitive action once the matter was brought to his attention. Mr. Ignatieff, I believe has answered one very important question for me in this campaign and that is that he is willing to take responsibility for the actions of the Federal Liberal Party and is willing to say that he has made and error in judgement. Mr. Ignatieff has proved that he is capable and willing to rectify a mistake, no matter what the cost to him,or his party is politically. this in itself is something we as Canadians have not seen in the past 5 years with Stephen Harper and is a significant difference between the two of them and a look into how they will govern.
I see this election as a who can we trust kind of thing and we all come away with a different answer depending on how we see things, or the no one answer, because we feel that they all lie in the end, but there is some proof of what is in the pudding by how these two leaders conduct themselves and what kind of campaign they are running. Ignatieff has is running an open campaign where although it get costly politically when his candidates say the wrong thing, they are free to do so. on the other side mr. harper has admitted that his party strategy in this election is for his candidates to say only what has been already approved as okay and at that to try not to say anything at all. I think that this idea that parliamentarians were supposed to buy a pig in a poke when it came to the costs of things in the budget and the implementation of certain plans of the Conservatives has filtered down into this campaign and we the voters are supposed to buy a pig in the poke to and reelect him and his party blindly without knowing the cost.
I think this election is also about the differences in how the leaders see Canada’s international role in the future. If Harper is a humanitarian he hides it well in the way he chooses to make it individual Canadian responsibility for helping certain nations instead only seeing aid to others that requires military action a role of the government of Canada. Ignatieff claims to be different and in the past the Liberals have at least attempted to do good. Harper keeps on referring to the good Canadians the ones who work hard and pay their taxes as those Canadians who deserve to have their rights above the others. The unemployed, the poor, the vulnerable to him are less important and like he said today in Victoria, ” If you have no money you just get less.” Ignatieff and the other candidates have at least said that they think that all Canadians deserve the same treatment under the law, whether or not you are the victim, accused or the guilty. Harper has stated that he will and wants to shut down our medicare agreement with the provinces which will strand the people;e with not enough money from getting the same medical attention as the rich. Ignatieff and the other leaders have stated that they know there are challenges to be face and that the system needs improvement ,but acknowledge that everyone in Canada should get the same medical attention no m,atter what amount of money you have. An interesting question was put out their by Ignatieff when he said,” how does Mr. Harper justify the money to buy the F-35 Jet fighter, the cost of the G8 and G20 summits and the building of all of the prisons, but have no money to spend on health care, a better life end for seniors, and all of the other social problems that face this country. The difference is in the priorities each leader sees as the most important to Canadians.
I think it is time for a change in how we are be governed, if not who is doing the governing. Harper has decided that his message to Canadians is that he and his party are perfect and so there is no need to change. Ignatieff has decided make his message to Canadians that he and his party have learnt from their mistakes of the past and represent a healthy good change needed in the governing of Canada. If nothing else I like Mr. Ignatieff’s message to Canadians more and what it says about him and his party.