Liberals for Linda

A collaborative effort by Edmonton Liberals to Get Out the Vote for Linda Duncan in Edmonton-Strathcona. Fellow progressives of Whyte, Unite!

Erecting the Danny Williams Edifice in Alberta

I don't know what to make of Danny Williams. Here we have a millionaire premier elected on a walloping Conservative majority doing everything he can to push the Tory feds out of Newfoundland and Labrador.

Williams' "Anything But Conservative" campaign has become increasingly vocal in the last few days, stepping up its radio and TV ads in the province and now reaching across the map into southern Ontario.

In fact, the campaign has bought a billboard (send us a photo! We'll pay you in kisses!) on the Gardiner Expressway in Toronto to remind voters of Finance Minister Jim Flaherty's comments that Ontario is "the last place" anyone would want to invest. Flaherty made the remark back in March, in a post-budget furor criticizing Liberal premier Dalton McGuinty's progressive tax policies.

Williams' message is one of personal attack, hitting Harper with accusations of broken promises and character weakness. The tactic has been undeniably effective, eroding support for the Tories throughout the Atlantic region, to the point where polls are predicting that Newfoundland and Labrador may be out of a Conservative government entirely.

I have a few problems with this campaign. I worry about a premier stretching his hand out to backslap voters in another province at the expense of local issues. I'm concerned about voting blocs that could leave an entire province without any representatives at the federal table. And then there's the whole private money/public platform tangle.

But then, the prospect of a Tory-blue province mobilizing individual voters to stand up against a federal ruling party that is becoming increasingly restrictive in its policies and secretive about its platform has a lot of resonance for Alberta. It is a call for progressives to voice their criticism and break the electoral stranglehold.

I'm beginning to think I could find Williams a nice spot along the Whitemud if he wants to put up a few more billboards.

Plus, I wanted to use the lines 'erecting' and 'edifice' in the same blog subtitle. Can you blame me?