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One Conservative candidate that wants to be muzzled by the Con strategists.

One of the Conservative PMO’s campaign strategy with Conservative candidates running in by-elections is to either refuse the national media access to them to ask questions, or brush them off saying they’re too busy campaigning to talk.

Apparently, this is because getting asked questions by the national media on national matters is too uncontrolled an atmosphere for them, and the PMO and Harper certainly wouldn’t want to have a candidate say potentially damaging things, or else have the candidate put in an awkward position and embarrassed by being quizzed on controversial Conservative policies. We saw that strategy with failed Cons. candidate Dianne Cunningham Haskett in London a couple years ago, and we see some more examples of this in the current byelections over here, where Knb asks or wonders how the candidates can accept these terms in order to run. This would go doubly for candidates who are in these Toronto ridings and who have almost no shot at winning. You’d think some leeway would be given to them to speak freely, but as we saw with removed candidate Mark Warner in Toronto-Centre, deviating from the Conservative script is not tolerated.

The one candidate who probably doesn’t mind being muzzled is the Conservative running in Willowdale by the name of Maureen Harquail. See, she’s Finance Minister Jim Flaherty’s cousin, the same fellow who’s been running around Canada telling anyone who would listen how crappy Ontario is for businesses and manufacturers to work in – in essence trying to almost openly discourage investment in the province run by his hated ex-provincial rival and Premier Dalton McGuinty.

I’d be embarrassed too if I had reporters asking me what I thought of my cousin crapping all over the province I’m running in, and it appears that there was a slight slipup according to Jeff, and a reporter did ask her that, with her being unable to formulate a real coherent response. Nothing in the script or in the Cons. playbook about how to deal with that, apparently. I guess they’ll need to address that in revision 2.0 of their guide — either that or surround the candidate with more security goons to keep nasty reporters far enough away so they can’t ask “inconvenient” questions.

4 comments to One Conservative candidate that wants to be muzzled by the Con strategists.

  • Take it easy Mushroom. It was a simple name error.

  • mushroom

    Scott, you got your Tories confused.

    Diane Cunningham was a Red Tory from London.  Lost to Harris for the Ontario PC leadership in 1988.

    Dianne Haskett was the ex-Mayor of London who worked in the US who finished third or fourth in the London by-election.

    Both are very different ideologically.  I know you want to treat all Conservatives as vermin, but please do not misrepresent the more progressive ones. 
    I know one thing I would expect if I am a CPC candidate running in three of these by-elections.  I don’t expect to be quitting my day jobs.  Don’t need to when you have professional sign crews and circulate your campaign literature through ad-mail deliveries.

  • On the serious side, the Harper régime has taken away the mythology that Members of Parliament listen to and represent the interests of their constituents.  If I am thinking about voting for a Conservative candidate in my riding, it doesn’t matter what I think about the local candidate.  It doesn’t matter if he/she is intelligent, witty, or has a firm grasp of local issues.  He is only a propaganda mouthpiece for continuing the Harper régime.

    Harper and his propaganda candidates will be running template campaigns much like one can do when making a blog under Google Blogger.  The campaign signs will be the same except for propaganda candidate name changes.  The pamphlets will follow the same format.  The issues will be the same in each riding.

    What would Jesus do if he were running as a Conservative candidate?  What would Harper say to Jesus?

    "Jesus, you’ve been dumped as a candidate for not following My campaign instructions."

  • "We are the Borg.  Resistance is futile!"

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