The Problem with Attacking Justin Trudeau

On Monday, the Conservatives unveiled their latest round of attack ads against Liberal leader Justin Trudeau. The ads can be found almost everywhere – television, Facebook, Twitter – and focus on Trudeau’s alleged inexperience.

The idea that Trudeau isn’t ready to govern Canada has been stressed before. It makes sense if you ignore the fact Trudeau will never actually gain this experience until he’s elected to govern. Has he spent enough time in the opposition benches? Does he have enough life experience beyond politics to understand how the real world works? I don’t know the answers to these questions, but it’s worth noting Harper found himself facing them as well in 2004 so the attack rings a bit hollow in this respect. Continue reading

Are the Conservatives Starting to Panic?

The Conservatives aren’t your typical, knee-jerk reaction party. They like to plan things out months, if not years, in advance and stick to their plan with uncompromising consistency. Hence, the endless parade of empty talking points (if you repeat something long enough, it must become the truth, no?) and well-honed attack ads.

April’s federal budget – a document that stretches all the way back to 2011’s Speech from the Throne – represented the Conservatives’ road map to re-election. They would campaign on expanded TFSAs and income splitting for couples. The budget was balanced in a deceptive fashion to make all of this possible, and the party was very careful to reign in future surpluses so that the opposition parties couldn’t hit the campaign trail with lavish promises. Continue reading