VANCOUVER (CP) - A Conservative leader often branded as a right-wing ideologue declared he would love his children even if they were gay, and swore not to use a constitutional loophole to overturn same-sex marriage....Well, I'm glad that the Conservative leader was brave enough to point out that while he may not love Canada, he does love his children. Even if they end up liking the butt sex.
How would this staunch opponent of same-sex marriage react if he learned his children were gay? The Conservative leader - and father of a young boy and girl - paused briefly before answering.
"It's a duty of parents to always love their children," Harper replied.
"I love my children and I'm going to love my children all my life."
That personal declaration was followed by a more substantive statement where Harper swore not to use the Constitution's controversial notwithstanding clause on same-sex marriage.
It was as adamant as he has ever been on the issue and left only the slimmest and most legally remote chance that the recent same-sex marriage law will ever be overturned.
"I will never use the notwithstanding clause on that issue," Harper said.
Now comes this news from the latest SES poll: For Canadians outside of Quebec:
LIB – 41% (+4)
CP – 41% (+6)
NDP - 14% (-11)
GP – 4% (NC)
So the NDP continues to falter, but outside of Quebec the Libs and Cons are tied. Moreover, in Ontario the numbers are sobering as well.
LIB – 41% (-3)
CP – 38% (+8)
NDP – 15% (-8)
GP – 6% (+3)
I don't know what the margin of error for that poll is, but it's worth noting that the Cons' strength does not seem to be coming from a strong NDP. That is to say, for the people who were worried that the NDP would bring in a Tory government, there is no evidence for your beliefs. Calm down. If we're going to get a Tory government, I have no doubt that people will blame the NDP. But grow up - if the Liberals lose, it will be nobody's fault but Paul Martin's. Harper increasingly manages to dress himself in moderate drag (and that's what I believe it is) and he continues to grow his appeal to Ontario voters - 8 points up, more than a month before the election is Very Good News for Harper.
I think what we're beginning to see is a movement towards (at least) a Conservative minority. This will no doubt cause the NDP to hemmorhage votes. I haven't made a seat prediction yet, but I think that if Harper continues to do this well (and barring a major Liberal success) we could be talking PM Harper by the end of January.