Saturday, August 04, 2007

More On Harper's Week in Atlantic Canada

Harper's visit to Atlantic Canada this past week has been a political hurricane for his party, with Harper doing most of the damage himself.

I blogged earlier about Harper's thick-witted approach to damage in Newfoundland, but the National Post adds more to the list of droppings Harper left around the region:

Harper told reporters the speed of compensation for the region largely depends on the provincial government. "The province has to start the work, and then send some of the bills to Ottawa," Harper said.

"There's a provision for advance payment. That can be done fairly quickly if we get the documentation. Sometimes it takes time, because sometimes the documentation doesn't come. But I hope we'll get on with it quickly."

Brilliant - I'm sure that people are just going to be so impressed with Harper's willingness to be constructive after a natural disaster has happened.

Nova Scotia:
Then later that afternoon, Harper let loose with a blast aimed at Nova Scotia Premier Rodney MacDonald and their ongoing battle over the Atlantic accord.

At a barbecue in the Nova Scotia riding of Foreign Affairs Minister Peter MacKay, Harper told some 300 Tory faithful that every province was better off because of the Conservative's budget. "More money is flowing to this province and will flow in future years, for health care, for post-secondary education, for daycare spaces, for gateway and infrastructure and, yes, for equalization."

Speaking from a podium flanked by two miniature lighthouses, Harper told the crowd Nova Scotia received $100-million more in equalization in the most recent budget.

"Make no mistake, our best hope, our only hope, is that despite our differences, Conservatives stay united and work together in this province and across the country," Harper said.

Although MacDonald was at the barbeque, he was not invited to speak. The premier could not be reached for comment.

Just before the prime minister took to the podium, aides removed the flags of Canada and Nova Scotia, fueling speculation that an accord announcement may have been scuttled at the last moment.

Jeepers, talk about peeing in the pool while you're drinking from it! First, he brags (naturally to a "safe crowd") about all the wonderful things he's doing for Atlantic Canada, and then he turns around and refuses to have the flags of both Canada and Nova Scotia around while he gives this speech.

If this wasn't so pathetically childish, it might almost qualify as funny. Sadly, it's childish and stupid. I hope that Atlantic Canadians are paying close attention to the respect that Harper's bunch are paying them.

Of course, the only place he didn't completely screw up was a closed door meeting with "business leaders" in New Brunswick:

In between his controversial Newfoundland and Nova Scotia visits, Harper stopped in Moncton, N.B., for a private meeting with a group of local business leaders, in a session hosted by former Tory premier Bernard Lord. Harper met the group behind closed doors for roughly an hour.

New Brunswick, which has no offshore oil or gas industry, is Harper's best choice for adding Atlantic seats in the next election. The Conservatives currently hold three of the province's 10 House of Commons seats.

So, the only place he didn't really screw it up was in a closed door meeting hosted by his friends. This man thinks he is some kind of leader??

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