Suddenly and simultaneously, some controversial things have popped up on the Conservative government’s watch.
The F35 Debacle. Well, that’s been a debacle for awhile, but it’s now too much of one for even the Conservatives to ignore. It is reported that they have cancelled the exclusive sole-source contract for the Stealth Fighter jet/bomber and will revert back to an open competition amongst several different fighter planes. That may happen after an independent accounting firm reported the jets will now cost over 40 billion $… way over what the Conservatives claimed it would be.
You may remember the reason we had an election in 2011 was because the Conservatives refused to release the estimates to the House and were found in contempt and lost the confidence of the House. Unfortunately, not enough Canadians seemed to grasp that issue, or seemed to care, and the Conservatives were sent back with a majority (thanks in part to the inept Michael Ignatieff and our voting system splitting the votes amongst the opposition).
It will be interesting to see if they grasp this or care now, and remember in 2015 they were misled by the Conservatives.
The other issue this week is Nexen; the Canadian oil firm that Harper has allowed a Chinese government-owned oil company to buy (and also not noted as much, he reversed the decision on the Malaysian firm and will allow that government-owned business to buy Petronas).
Sun reporter/commentator David Akin has noted that Abacus, Sun’s polling firm, has consistently noted 2/3 or more opposition to allowing the Chinese deal to happen. Abacus is not exactly a liberal polling firm.. so for them to get that high of an amount of opposition suggests many Conservative voters weren’t happy with this prospect.
Harper has managed to split the opposition off with wedge issues/attack ads the past 6 years. They do not like controversial issues that may wedge off their own support.. these are 2 issues that may represent those wedges. We’ll see, as we say.