Thursday, January 07, 2010

Something stirring

The early Conservative spin is not holding up, it appears, two polls today that are unfavourable for the party of prorogation. The Ekos poll showing the Conservatives slipping, now at 33%.
Those are the worst numbers we’ve seen for them in at least six months,” EKOS president Frank Graves said in a telephone interview.
“It’s very difficult to attribute it to anything other than prorogation because it was a period when nothing much else was happening.”
And the Angus Reid poll out on prorogation itself that is pretty devastating to the case that Canadians don't care about this move. 53% disagree with the decision. You can read through all the results yourself, it's fairly clear throughout that citizens are not content with the decision. Even in Alberta, slightly more people agree with the Opposition's view on why the government has prorogued, i.e., to avoid accountability on the Afghan detainee issue, than the government's case that it has to recalibrate: 29% to 26%. When they're not buying your story in Alberta...well, you know the rest. Highest rates of disagreement with prorogation are in Ontario and Atlantic Canada. Lots of interesting stuff there.

Canadians are showing that they get it. It's not just we online plebes. Perhaps more consideration might be given now to that Facebook group as really representing something. It wasn't a big question mark, it was an "out in front" indicator, it appears, reflected in the AR poll. An early warning signal that all was not well with PM Harper's move.

There's more reflection on Harper's actions today in a very tough Globe editorial where, among other things, he is characterized as evidencing a "casual arrogance" toward Canada's institutions given the way he prorogued, over the phone, and what that said about Harper's attitude toward the institution of the Governor General's office. Again, the tone of the Globe piece is similar to their prior major one on prorogation, it's serious and strong. Exactly what is warranted from credible, major national media voices. This is serious business, prorogation as a personal whim, it's not to be belittled and spun as the Prime Minister has been doing.

The editorial, the polls, they all suggest that sanity is starting to prevail against the arrogant spin we've heard since the move was pulled last week. Makes you feel more optimistic about the whole mess.

Just for fun, someone has put up a clip from the CBC interview with Harper, highlighting a question from Mansbridge that came near the very end, a lengthy question that Harper had to sit and listen to as Mansbridge enumerated some painful realities in Harper's shifting positions. It really was a good question, the kind we should see much more frequently posed by media, were they to have more access. Just interesting to watch Harper here, that's all...