THUNDER BAY – The Liberal Express got off to a rocky start on Tuesday. After two stops, the bus broke down. Stuck at the side of the road awaiting repairs, it was eventually fixed at Harper Diesel in Kitchener.
Wednesday, the Liberal leader stopped for lunch at Chez Piggy. The optics for the pictures of the Chez Piggy mascot with Ignatieff set the NDP Warroom into action.
In the Globe and Mail, there is a perfectly terrible picture of the Liberal leader grinning for a piece of cheese. (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/ottawa-notebook/ndp-operatives-pig-out-on-ignatieff-attack/article1639793/)
It is almost as if Ignatieff’s travel and logistics co-ordinator for his tour is either Bob Rae’s leadership team, or a group funded by the Conservative Warroom. If it is the best and brightest in the Liberal Party co-ordinating the tour, then perhaps it is better that Ignatieff and his team all find other things to do. Politics certainly doesn’t appear their strong point.
The goal of the Liberal Express is to “reach out to ordinary Canadians”, however looking at the Liberal Party website, all of the events are hosted by the Liberal Party, and all appear to be fundraising events.
In otherwords the real audience isn’t ordinary Canadians, it is to bolster Liberal support, and raise funds for the party.
There isn’t anything wrong with the Liberals embarking on a national tour to raise funds and bolster party support, but one might think that the Liberals would be willing to admit to Canadians that is what they are doing.
All parties spend time at partisan events over the summer. However, Ignatieff is trying to tell people that his appearances at Liberal Party Riding Association events are somehow engaging those outside the political process.
“I am very excited to be hitting the road this summer to meet with Canadians, to listen, to learn, and to share the Liberal vision with them,” said Mr. Ignatieff while surrounded by members of his caucus and hundreds of cheering Liberal supporters on Parliament Hill.
What the Liberal leader is really doing is bolstering his own troops. It might be that Ignatieff is taking one more toss of the dice over the summer to test his chances.
Based on some of the polling numbers that Ignatieff is gathering, Canadians have already made their decisions.
That of course is just my opinion, as always, your mileage may vary.