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Eves' Infomercial
26/03/2003
What was the thinking behind Ernie Eves' infomercial budget? I don't think that it was to eliminate debate in the Legislature, as Bruce Rolston seems to suggest. Instead, I believe the strategists were looking for a dramatic kick-off to the election campaign. What better way to start building some excitement for Mike Harris' replacement than to add some razzle-dazzle to the announcement that the Tories are returning to the days of sizeable tax cuts? From today's Globe and Mail:
The controversial presentation, which has been deemed unconstitutional, will promise wide and deep cuts in taxes as the Tories try to boost their popularity in advance of the election expected this year.
If this revolutionary presentation had been accepted, perhaps a dramatic announcement would have been warmly received by the public, and served to energize voters' enthusiasm for reelection. Apparently, members of the PC caucus don't feel that a typical budget announcement would have been sufficiently promoted by the media. From the Globe again:
Joe Spina, a two-term Tory backbencher from Brampton Centre, also attacked media coverage of the issue. "The media doesn't cover the budget as a whole in the legislature anywhere. So what difference would it make to the media whether it's in the legislature or not?" Mr. Spina scoffed when told that CBC Radio usually carries live coverage of the budget speech. "The CBC, yeah, the Communist Broadcasting Corporation," he said.
In any case, it looks like Eves will continue with his plan to use the government's money to promote his party. Meanwhile, Ikram Saeed explains why this is bound to hurt Conservatives where it counts.
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