Monday, August 24, 2009

Ignatieff on fall election

Le Devoir has an interview today. Done while he's recently been in Quebec ridings, you know, wasting his summer away. The impression you get is that this interview marks the end of the summer political season and the gloves are starting to come off again.

Ignatieff starts pushing the Conservatives back on the defensive in this interview, raising some of the expected issues: the visa bumbling, the "laissez-faire Ottawa" position on Nortel, 1.5 million unemployed, no plan on the isotope shortage, no plan for recovery from the deficit. Also smart tactically, the characterization of the Harper government as one that refuses to cooperate, a Harper negative that it's smart to push and additionally, take off the table for Harper to use as a ploy for an election (as he did last fall).

Also notable here, the interviewer's description of Ignatieff's demeanour when he is asked about the prospect of an election creating "instability." He's described as "visibly upset," and forcefully responds to the point. Like to see a bit of flash on a point like that, it's ridiculous and should evoke a passionate response, particularly given the instability-instigator that we all know has sown it and now seeks to lecture others on causing it.

And some welcome talk from Ignatieff on the recent reports of Conservatives seeking a majority:
Michael Ignatieff considers the conservative attitude "arrogant." "It's ridiculous to say that. In my opinion, nobody in Canada believes that the Conservatives deserve a majority. There is a deficit of 50 billion dollars and 1.5 million unemployed. And I think you can not expect a majority to Canadians. We offer a platform, and the citizens make their choice. But to say that it is in the interest of people to have a conservative majority is such arrogance. "
Yes, just say it. More of this please.

See also Chantal Hebert today, assessing the situation in Quebec for the Liberals. It's an optimistic outlook.