Jean Chretien speaking now about Stephane Dion, the Harper record and Michael Ignatieff in his address. Tremendous, sustained standing "O" for Mr. Chretien.
Chretien notes, very humorously, Mr. Harper's absence from the group photo at the G20 as only he can. Hilarious stretch of pure political fun here, well done. "Mr. Harper is always where he is when Canada needs him." Touche, touche.
Bit of a metaphor starting up here, on issue after issue, "Where is Stephen Harper?" On Africa, where is Mr. Harper? On peace in the middle east, on Cuba's transition to new realities, carrying on the bipartisan tradition in foreign policy of Canada....for all of this, where is Stephen Harper? Nowhere! But we know where he will be after the next election!
No such thing as Liberal or Conservative values, just Canadian values. An "Obaman" series of notes being struck by Chretien.
Notes Harper's giving interviews to foreign media to the exclusion of Canadian...reminding the audience of some of Mr. Harper's classic quotes that have derided Canada over the years, the "northern European welfare state," etc., and pointing out the irony of Mr. Harper now boasting abroad about how proud he is of the Canadian record...a Liberal record. Cites the surpluses, the regulation of the banking industry, Cdn banks standing strong while others around the world are falling.
Mr. Harper tough on crime? He should be charged with "stealing our record." "You can't blame him, if I had his record, I'd want to steal someone else's too."
"When the chips are down, the Canadian people turn to us."
A great speech, no question. There is a notable change in the room when Mr. Chretien speaks, there's a hush and a hanging on each of his words, the room clearly loves him. A classic.