Liberal Party peddling "voter suppression" myths
More than five years ago, the unthinkable happened: the Liberal Party was defeated in an election, and replaced by Prime Minister Stephen Harper and the Conservative Party.
At least it was unthinkable for the Liberal Party. Even after the Sponsorship Scandal, in which the Liberal Party was caught red-handed blatantly stealing from Canadian taxpayers, the Liberal Party -- who had begun to believe their own "natural governing party" hype -- was confused, and that confusion has never cleared.
A Globe and Mail by John Ibbitson article notes that the Liberals have pointed the finger for their losses squarely at the Conservatives, repeating claims, increasingly popular among the far-left, that the Tories are attemptign to dissuade Canadians from voting.
"The Liberals believe that one reason they lost so badly in 2008 was that about 800,000 people who normally vote for them didn’t vote at all, contributing to the record low turnout in the last election," Ibbitson writes. "They blame the relentlessly negative tone of the Conservative campaign, though they forget that the performance of then-leader Stephane Dion and his highly unpopular Green Shift carbon tax proposal surely had more to do with it."
Ibbitson is almost exceedingly polite in neglecting to mention that it's the Liberal Party that has always, always, set the bar in terms of nasty campaigning. (After all, when you release an ad implying that your competitors may try to transform Canada into some kind of a military police state, you've clearly dedicated yourself to campaign dirt.)
This is before one even considers the impact of gratuitous Liberal accusations of racism against any candidate who seems even remotely conservative, trying to discourage their voters from turning up hoping they would feel too guilt-ridden to cast their vote.
While noting that Conservative warnings about a Liberal/NDP/Bloc Quebecois coalition could be designed to simultaneously boost Tory voting numbers while discouraging Liberal voters, Ibbitson -- like most rational people -- doesn't seem to consider "voter suppression" arguments very convincing.
"In all likelihood, no party is engaged in an overt campaign to depress voter turnout," Ibbitson concludes. "But both the Liberals and the Conservatives may be hoping that, if they can mobilize their vote while discouraging voters who incline to their opponent, that’s not the worst thing in the world."
In other words, the Liberals are just as guilty of "voter suppression" as anyone else would be.
And just like after their 2006 defeat at the polls, they still won't own up to it. No one should be surprised. It's just their way.