Thursday, April 21, 2005

Thoughts on Speechifying

So our beloved Prime Minister has spoken to the people of Canada. The speech itself seems to have been motivated primarily by a desire to get around the press, and Martin said a number of things to pay attention to. First and foremost was his reminding that he already apologized for the Sponsorship scandal, and that he was the one who convened the Gomery Inquiry in the first place. I have to say, this was probably the weakest part of the speech - most of what he did was largely what you would expect from a someone caught red-handed.

The more important statement was Martin's commitment to hold an election within 30 days of the final report of the Gomery inquiry. I think this is a pretty strong play for Martin - the opposition parties may end up looking petty if they insist on an election now, before all the facts are known. It will be interesting to see how this polls - most of the surveys I've seen have shown that people don't want an election yet, and I'd bet that Martin's commitment has reinforced that.

As for the opposition parties, I have to say that both the Conservatives and the NDP flubbed this. Both Harper and Layton treated this like it was an election speech, and I know it turned me off. Though it was good for all three opposition parties to repeat that this is a Liberal crisis, not a national one.

I'd just like to say that I'm once again grateful that we have a Westminster system in the country. Bush violates the law of his country six ways before breakfast, and nobody does a damn thing. In Canada, a nasty bout of white collar crime is enough to implode the government.

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