They’re wrong, for the reasons they cite.
They’re right, for the reasons they don’t.
Let us explain: This week, the Toronto Star’s much-respected Chantal Hebert cited — with no apparent enthusiasm — two public opinion polls, by Ekos and Nanos, and declared the Conservative government’s support “rock solid.”
Wrote she: “The bottom line is that the Conservative core vote is more solid than that of either of the other two main parties.” In that, she is right.
Acclaimed author and commentator Michael Harris, no fan of the Harper cabal, is similarly pessimistic. We will “never get to the bottom” of the scandal, a weary Harris wrote last week in iPolitics. There’s simply too many details for a beleaguered agency like Elections Canada to chase down. He’s probably right about that, too.
Both Hebert and Harris are wrong, however — but not, as noted, for the reasons they give. First, when a scandal of this magnitude starts to metastasize, it takes months to register in the public’s consciousness.
Voters have heard too many baseless allegations of criminality, too many times, to take Opposition scandal-mongering too seriously.
As a general rule, they will not pass judgment unless they see perps being led away in handcuffs and orange jumpsuits.
Thus, when my former boss Jean Chretien called in the RCMP in May 2002 to probe the then-nascent sponsorship file, the Liberal party was sitting at more than 50% in national public opinion polls.
It remained there for nearly two years, until Paul Martin’s juvenile wrecking crew took over, and energetically devoted themselves to shredding the Liberal Party’s brand. Commencing in February 2004, the Grits went into a freefall from which they have never recovered.
So, merely peering at a pair of early polls, and concluding that the public has already rendered a verdict — as Hebert has done — is premature evaluation.
The Con’s Robocon scandal is only just beginning. Every day brings new revelations — most recently, in a CBC report that election rules were violated in a longtime Liberal bastion in the Toronto area.
Political graves, I always tell candidates I’m privileged to work for, are dug with tiny shovels.
Robocon will be no different.
Second, to assert — as Harris does — that the magnitude of Robocon will overwhelm Elections Canada and the RCMP, is also flatly wrong.
To some, the 31,000 complaints to elections watchdogs about voting irregularities and fraud are too complex, and too myriad, to ever be fully investigated.
But remember: In the case of the sponsorship scandal, only a handful of prosecutions have (to date) taken place.
Most were for the theft of only a few thousand bucks. The Mounties and the Crown didn’t need 31,000 cases, or billions of dollars missing, to blow the Liberal party’s reputation to smithereens.
Political cancers — like all real-life cancers — always start small. Always.
So, at the end of this, if Robocon is so bad — and it truly is — why won’t it defeat Harper’s gang in 2015?
Because of the opposition, that’s why.
As long as the Liberals and the New Democrats continue to divide the progressive vote, Harper will continue to live at 24 Sussex.
Nathan Cullen, by far the smartest NDP leadership candidate, knows this and has warned against it.
But, based upon what knowledgeable Dippers are saying, Cullen is unlikely to win his party’s leadership.
As a result, Harper will win again in 2015.
And not because Robocon isn’t a threat to him.
Because vote-splitting Liberals and New Democrats are his best friends.
Source: toronto sun
Author: Warren Kinsella