Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Monday in Conservative election machinations

So let's check in on what the Harper Conservatives were up to on Monday given that the PM supposedly does not want an "opportunistic election" (as of Friday anyway).

The Prime Minister was out striking a rather contradictory pose in light of the above position:
The federal government will listen to opposition requests for next month's budget but won't "engage in horse trading or negotiations," Prime Minister Stephen Harper said Monday.

"We listen to the views of other parties in Parliament whether we agree with them or not," Harper told reporters in Vancouver.

"In the end, after listening to the pitches of the other parties, we will make the decisions we think are in the best interest of Canadians."
He'll listen but then he'll do what he wants, thank you very much. What the point of listening is, then, remains to be seen. They may act upon suggestions from other parties, namely the NDP, the only party they're meeting with, but it sounds like a take it or leave it scenario shaping up. Way to make things work, oh opportunistic-election-naysayer!

An urgent Conservative fundraising appeal to members was reported as well:
In a fundraising letter stamped “URGENT,” the Harper Conservatives are appealing for money to help finance an election they say is imminent.
The letter from top Tory fundraiser Sen. Irving Gerstein, obtained by iPolitics.ca, says the party needs another $243,900 for an election “we will likely face in the next few weeks.”
The sum, Gerstein says, will “pay for two weeks of campaign preparedness action before an election is called.”
They'll be the boys who cried wolf if we don't have one then, that stuff gets old real fast. Or do Conservatives just fall for the "urgent" appeal every time and enjoy the theatre of it all?

Now what about the Conservative gang in the ridings, what might they have been up to on Monday in their home bases? Surely it must all be nose to the grindstone constituency work were they to be following the PM's no opportunistic election dictum. To the announcements!

Conservative Minister of State Gary Goodyear, Minister of State for Seniors Julian Fantino, $4.2 million in program funding to small-medium sized manufacturers in southern Ontario, Brampton, Ontario.

Lawrence Cannon, Minister of Foreign Affairs, $600,000 loan to Wakefield Mill Inn, Wakefield, Quebec. Cannon had time for photo-ops as the Libya situation developed all day? Amazing. Looks like more time was spent preparing the Wakefield Inn news release than the Libya statement.

Christian Paradis, Minister of Natural Resources, $250,000 loan to L.S. Finition Industrielle Inc.

Christian Paradis, $317,900 loan, Fibres Lyster, Lyster, Quebec.

Christian Paradis, $191,000, job funding, Montreal, Quebec.

Conservative MP Gerald Keddy, MP for South Shore-St. Margaret's, N.S., $52,000 for seaside park at Vogler's Cove, N.S., also $90,000 in other area funding.

Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence, $200,000 for a Community Hall and Fire Rescue Centre, Port Bickerton, N.S.

Peter MacKay, $500,000 loan to Canso Seafoods Limited, N.S.

Peter MacKay, $93,000, job funding, St. John's, Nfld.

Jean-Pierre Blackburn, Minister of Veterans Affairs, $175,000 in Funding to Société d'histoire du Lac-Saint-Jean, Alma, Quebec.

Jean-Pierre Blackburn, $94,000, job funding, Alma, Quebec.

Jacques Gourde, Member of Parliament for Lotbinière-Chutes-de-la-Chaudière and Mr. Steven Blaney, Member of Parliament for Lévis-Bellechase, $476,000 in federal skills funding, Saint Romuald, Quebec.

Conservative MP James Lunney, MP for Nanaimo-Alberni, $15,000 Nanaimo African Heritage Society.

Conservative Senator Don Meredith, Toronto, $12,500, Ontario Black History Society, Toronto, Ontario.

Just your ordinary Monday bonanza of government of Canada funding brought to you by Conservative MPs and Ministers, most of it in their own ridings or in the case of the ministers, in their home provinces. Designed to show they're bringing home the bacon, baby. Could be a very expensive week.

Watch what they do, as always...