The Election: Day 17/Nothing gained, nothing lost

Tonight the first of the debates, in French. It didn't offer much to help an undecided voter decide where to put their X. Duceppe was restrained by the format from getting at Martin in a sustained manner. Harper and Layton were just along for the ride. My overall assessment would be:nothing gained, nothing lost. The sponsorship scandal came up early on and Martin took some heat on that but no major blow struck. Duceppe coasted through the debate not really challenged.I found the format was not really helpful.

Let's hope the debate tomorrow night is a little more stimulating.

The Quebec wing of the Liberal Party accidentally released a list of ridings yesterday that shows it has written off a majority of seats in the province and conceded almost all of the francophone areas to the Bloc Québécois.A mistakenly sent e-mail suggests they've already conceded 45 seats to the Bloc and can only count on winning ten seats. The rest are up for grabs.

The gaffe left the Liberals red-faced, given that they have characterized the election as a referendum on Canadian unity. The election results could prove to be an embarrassment if, as the list suggests, the Liberals have little hope of winning 45 of the 75 seats in Quebec and can only count on winning 10 of the 75 seats.

For more details go to:
Globe and Mail

One noteworthy event today was the announcement that Ed Schreyer, former NDP Premier of Manitoba and former Governor General, will be representing the NDP in a Winnipeg riding currently held by the Conservatives. This has generated some controversy over whether it is appropriate for a former Governor General to re-enter the political arena. Personally, given his former political background, I don't see any problem with him offering himself as a candidate again. The GG is only a ceremonial position anyway.

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