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The full peek-a-boo campaign in Vaughan for Fantino.

There will be no Julian Fantino at the all-candidates debate in Vaughan tomorrow. He says he has a family event to attend, and his campaign people are claiming no other options were included. That’s not true, according to a Liberal who is heavily involved in the campaign. That Liberal tells me that the date of November 16th was also offered to candidates, and Fantino’s camp didn’t want to take that date either.

According to the article, Fantino has agreed to do a pre-taped debate that will air the same night on Rogers, but my same Liberal source tells me that there will be no audience, no media, no unscripted questions, and it will be moderated by former Mike Harris Cabinet Minister David Tsubouchi. Not exactly a tough venue for Fantino to perform under… so it appears the Harperites are betting that the full peek-a-boo campaign and Fantino’s known name will be enough to convince the riding to elect him.

Vaughan electors need to let Harper and Fantino know this is not acceptable, any more then it was in London with Dianne Haskett. She at least agreed to appear to do an all-candidates debate in front of an unbiased moderator and the voting citizens and media. Harper and Fantino and his handlers are taking Conservative arrogance one step further here by not even going that far.

There is an article today in the Star about whether Canadians should be worried about how Harper is treating democracy in the House of Commons. This little action in this by-election is a symptom of the bigger picture – of Harper and the Conservatives trying to do as little as democratically possible to obtain their goals.

UPDATE: If you’re wondering about Tsubouchi, you might remember him as claiming welfare folks could haggle with shopkeepers to get tuna tins down to 69 cents and live off of that, amongst other head-shaking statements.

5 comments to The full peek-a-boo campaign in Vaughan for Fantino.

  • “Ask me no questions, I’ll tell you know lies!” Is that CPC practice? When cornered, it goes along with the rest of the CPC Rovian playbook “Deny, deflect, attack, repeat message.”

  • Actually that is exactly how the conducted their campaign here in the West. After saying they didn’t want the Ottawa press gallery as a filter, instead preferring local coverage, any controversial candidate, for example Dona Cadman who refused to speak to the Vancouver Sun, presumable under Harper’s orders because she might have to speak about the CPC Affair which sadly bears the name of a very honourable man, her husband – she deserved better.

    And I understand not one CPC candidate showed up to Shaw cable televised debates in the Lower Mainland, perhaps BC – I did.

  • Derek

    Just throw in the green screen, a bit of clever audio and video editing, and heck, Fantino doesn’t even have to show up wearing pants to come off looking like a legitimate policy maker. I wonder how often they’ll trot out this strategy during the general election?

  • Alison S

    Pre-taped debate? What the heck is that? Will he be debating himself or will there be other candidates there, and why would they bother? And, of course, there is the issue of being able to doctor tapes. Where is the outrage?

  • Gayle

    I will say here what I said at Steve’s. Why are the other candidates caving in on this? Why debate him in a forum that is set up to protect him, because once that debate is over no one is going to care that he skipped out on others. I think the other candidates should refuse to debate him at all unless they can do so in an open and public format.

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