Daily Archives: October 5, 2008

Election race tightening, poll suggests


OTTAWA – A new poll suggests the federal election race is tightening as party leaders head into the home stretch.

With just over a week until voting day, a new survey suggests Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Conservatives have dipped to 34 per cent in support – still 10 points ahead of the Liberals but short of levels needed to win a majority.

With just over a week until voting day, a new survey suggests Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Conservatives have dipped to 34 per cent in support – still 10 points ahead of the Liberals but short of levels needed to win a majority.

The Canadian Press Harris-Decima survey put NDP support at 20 per cent and the Greens at 13 per cent, while the Bloc Quebecois had eight per cent nationally and was leading in Quebec with 33 per cent.

Harris-Decima president Bruce Anderson says the latest results suggest Tory hopes for a majority are dimmer than at any time since the campaign began a month ago.

The rolling survey interviewed 1,236 people Wednesday through Saturday and is considered accurate to within 2.8 percentage points, 19 times out of 20 – though the margin is higher for regional samples.

More information on the poll is available at www.harrisdecima.ca

The dangerous politics of intimidation and threats in Canada – Car and home vandals aim at Toronto Liberal supporters


Brake lines cut, cars damaged at homes. Toronto police patrolled a midtown area overnight, after vandals cut brake lines on at least 10 cars parked at homes with Liberal election signs on their lawns.

“We’re investigating. Officers are paying special attention to the designated area and we take this very seriously,” Staff-Sgt. Shawn Meloche, from 53 Division, said last night. “This is a danger to life as well as to property. Regardless of the motivation – and there appears to be a connection (to the signs) – this is a public safety issue.”

Affected residents live in the riding of St. Paul’s, in a swath of the city around Eglinton Ave. between Bathurst St. and Mount Pleasant Rd., and had Carolyn Bennett signs on their property. Although Meloche confirmed 10 cases of vandalism last night, Liberal riding headquarters said the number was going up, reporting 14 by 9 p.m.

The cars were also damaged in other ways; some were scratched and keyed with L signs. Phone and cable lines of some homes were cut.

“There are two child seats in the back of my car,” said Andrew Lane, chief financial officer for Bennett’s campaign. “To cut the brake line on a car like that is just evil. Awful.”

Added Lane, whose children are 6 months and 22 months: “You have to crawl under someone’s car and cut the brake line, knowing that it could kill someone, or their whole family.”

Lane discovered his brakes didn’t work on his silver Saturn View as he tried to pull up at a stop sign near his home yesterday. He kept slamming the brakes and, in a “moment of terror,” narrowly avoided slamming into a bus.

Later, the garage called to tell him it had been no accident. When Lane expressed disbelief, the mechanic told him: “Look, this is a big, heavy rubber hose and it’s been cut through with a very sharp knife. You should phone the police.”

Police later said Lane was not alone and asked if he had an election sign, telling him, “The Carolyn Bennett sign seems to be the one thing linking events.”

“I’m just sick to my stomach about this,” a shaken Bennett told the Toronto Star last night. She spent the day visiting the vandals’ victims. “It is so upsetting. I’ve spent my life encouraging people to get involved in the democratic process and now it would appear they are targeted for doing so.”

Brent Johnston, former chief fundraiser for the provincial Liberals, was backing his Volkswagen Golf slowly out of his driveway when alarms went off. He then discovered brake fluid in his driveway. When he called Volkswagen, they told him he wasn’t the first to call, and to check his car for damage.

He, too, has two young children and shudders to think what might have happened if he had driven the car with a cut brake line.

“This isn’t about party politics. Putting people’s lives at risk is a whole different thing,” said Johnston. “We’re not taking the sign down. We won’t be intimidated. But I am really disappointed this is happening in Canada. It’s beyond comprehension.”

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Conservative suggests immigrants are to blame for much of the crime in Canada


Calgary Tory offers no apology for immigrant-crime comment

by Jason Fekete; Thursday, September 25, 2008 – Canwest News Service
http://www.canada.com/theprovince/news/story.html?id=0add4a8…

CALGARY – Local Conservative incumbent Lee Richardson expressed regret Thursday – but offered no apology or resignation – for controversial comments he made suggesting immigrants are to blame for much of the crime in Canada.

But opposition parties and leaders representing minority groups are demanding the Calgary Centre Tory candidate – whose riding population is almost one-quarter recent immigrants – immediately apologize and either resign or be turfed for his “disgraceful” remarks.

“(Stephen) Harper must fire this man right away,” Liberal Leader Stephane Dion told reporters on the campaign trail, suggesting the comments reek of “intolerance” he attributed to the former Reform party.

“He cannot be a candidate anymore.”

The remarks were denounced by police officials, criminologists and immigrant aid groups, who noted there’s no data suggesting immigrants are to blame for a disproportionate amount of crime either in Calgary or across Canada.

Conservative Leader Stephen Harper – who already has been knocked off-message a few times this campaign by candidates making inappropriate comments – could face the fallout at a campaign event Friday in Calgary.

“Mr. Richardson has clarified his remarks, and from our perspective the matter is over,” said Kory Teneycke, Harper’s chief spokesman.

The political firestorm stems from an interview with a Calgary weekly newspaper published Thursday, in which Richardson is quoted as saying many crimes aren’t committed by people who “grew up next door” and that immigrants aren’t as law-abiding as the rest of the population.

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Republicans – McCain campaign launches new low-blow attacks in hopes of deflecting attention from America’s Economic problems


Palin smears Obama an old discredited attack

The Republican vice presidential nominee told supporters in the city of Englewood that Obama “is someone who sees America, it seems, as being so imperfect that he’s palling around with terrorists who would target their own country”.

The Alaska Governor was referring to William Ayers, a member of the radical 1960s group the Weathermen who placed bombs at the Pentagon and the Capitol, who supported Obama’s first run for public office in 1995.

The Obama campaign described Palin’s guilt-by-association attack as “desperate and false”.

Republicans have promised to ramp up the rhetoric ahead of the November 4 election in a bid to arrest Senator McCain‘s recent dip in the polls following his role in delays to the $700bn economic bail-out.

On Friday, his top adviser Greg Strimple promised a “very aggressive last 30 days” of campaigning.

“We are looking forward to turning a page on this financial crisis and getting back to discussing Mr Obama’s aggressively liberal record and how he will be too risky for Americans,” he told reporters.

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Seeing that Obama was a child at the time of the existence of the Weatherman, and for the “sake” of education, see below some information on who they were. No we are NOT talking about the Taliban, which I am sure Palin would love to link him to. BTW – Who is running for president McCain or Palin? What if we said “John McCain is a terrorist”, he name is similar to Timothy McVeigh (OKC bomber). Let’s round up all those people that look like McCain and McVeigh and send them to Gitmo Bay. Do you see how ignorant you can be? This comment is directed at the core Republican base which believe the innuendo (not all). The hope to attract new voters? I don’t know if it will work. I would hope that the voters would be more thoughtful. I am certain Palin never heard of Ayers before being provided the talking point of the day since she doesn’t read newspapers. There is another high-ranking republican that doesn’t read much. It is obvious that the McCain campaign is desperate and will do or say anything to take away attention from the fact that they do not have any plans to get Americans out of the mess their party has created. Americans want to know who plans to help them stay in or get a home, put food on the table, save their jobs and stop the warmongering.

The Weathermen: Background and formation

The group emerged from the campus-based opposition to the Vietnam War, as well as the Civil Rights Movements of the late 1960s. During this time, United States military action in Southeast Asia, especially in Vietnam, escalated. In the U.S., the anti-war sentiment was particularly pronounced during the 1968 U.S. presidential election.

The origins of the Weathermen can be traced to the collapse and fragmentation of the Students for a Democratic Society. We petitioned, we demonstrated, we sat in!