"Is the sovereignty of Canada going to fall apart if we standardize the jelly bean, I don't think so, maybe Mr. Dion thinks so... In fact, it was my Liberal predecessor who initiated them....
Bush then criticized the naysayers, in a far more abstract way, then Calderon answered. After Calderon's comments Harper interjected again, this time in French with:
"I believe for Mr Dion it is a regrettable step backwards to our whole question of NAFTA discussions"
The only leader to mention an opposition leader by name, the only one to provide detail on Canada's internal politics. The fact that Harper found it necessary to comment again in French, after all the leaders gave detailed answers, was an obvious attempt to make sure he inflicted a jab at Dion in both languages, for maximum coverage. The first exchange was regrettable, the second answer was a glaring example of a political animal, who saw an opportunity and couldn't resist.
Today was another example of a clear trend on the international stage, wherein Canada's dirty laundry is aired publicly and the Liberals are directly referenced. There was no need to mention Dion by name, as a matter of fact Harper gained more if played the statesman. Images of Harper on stage, in the middle of two important leaders, are political gold in terms of imagery. The press conference was a great opportunity, in and of itself, why Harper found it necessary to treat it like Question Period is beyond me, but hardly surprising. Canada can do better than a trash talking opportunist, who lacks any sense of diplomatic tact.
Liberal Arts and Minds has more.