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|Ignatieff, Layton targeted by Conservative attack ads||| Print ||
|Written by Michael Prestia|
|Tuesday, 18 January 2011 14:09|
With a looming threat of a spring election, political pundits are on their toes as the federal parties took steps in recent days to shape campaign rhetoric.
The Conservatives released a series of attack ads on their website Monday mainly taking aim at Michael Ignatieff. Four of the six videos attacked the Liberal leader’s coalition involvement, his position on taxes and his allegiance to both Canada and the United States.
While the Conservatives continue to say they do not want to head to the polls, Nelson Wiseman, Politics Professor at the University of Toronto told thedailyplanet.com the ads show the Conservatives may actually want an election.
“Polls say Harper is the most trusted among the leaders, or is thought of as the most competent leader and Ignatieff is not,” said Wiseman. “So they’re trying to reinforce that image with people through these ads...It’s been working for a long time, I don’t see the Conservatives dropping.”
The ads were similar to ones released by the Conservatives in the past, straying away from policy issues and focusing on party leaders.
“When you ask people how they vote the way they do, they’re more likely to say leader than policy,” said Wiseman. “The last election where it played a very big role was in 1988 with free trade. There are few elections I’ve observed where policy swayed the election.”
But Ignatieff tried to steer the debate back to policy on Monday when speaking to a group of reporters at a school in Toronto. “They’re not attacking our family care plan, they’re not attacking our early learning and child care plan, they’re not attacking our plans to invest in post-secondary education,” said Ignatieff as reported by the Globe and Mail.
“I think the fortunes of the Liberals are more in the hand of the Conservatives than they are of the liberals,” said Wiseman. “Parties don’t win because they do something, they generally win because the governing party fumbles, stumbles, tumbles.”
“There is nothing special Harper did in 2006, it was because people wanted to get rid of Martin and the Liberals,” said Wiseman. “When people want to get rid of Harper and the Conservatives they’ll elect Ignatieff, not because Ignatieff has come down with the ten commandments in his hands.”
The Conservative ads can be found on their youtube page.
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