The federal Conservatives are launching attack ads in B.C. tomorrow against federal Liberal Leader Stephane Dion's carbon tax.
The ads could also cause collateral damage for Premier Gordon Campbell, just days before B.C.'s new carbon tax takes effect.
"Dion Tax Trick" ads will blitz the airwaves on radio stations in the Lower Mainland and the Interior.
Tory strategists say it's the most expensive non-election ad-buy in B.C. for years, going into six-figure numbers, and could last up to three months.
The campaign will also feature public events at which people will wear bright yellow T-shirts with the slogans "The Dion Tax Trick" or "Dion's Tax on Everything."
I suppose the good news for Campbell, it's not like the ads are particularly effective, not to mention the geeky yellow shirt routine. That said, this is a huge media buy, and no matter the specifics, Campbell is likely to feel the heat. Essentially, Campbell will defend his plan, which indirectly validates the Liberal plan, putting him on a collision course with the Conservatives low road campaign. Campbell apparently has cordial relations with Harper, and this was evidenced by the Harper government's hypocritical initial reaction to B.C's carbon tax, but surely this puts a strain on things.
Campbell has as much as Dion to lose, one would think we see an informal alliance build over time, if we do see months of negative ads. Nothing overt, but an agreement, based on mutual self interest, since both are targets, regardless of who is characterized as the "trickster". It will be entirely fascinating to watch this battle develop in British Columbia. Could Harper push Campbell towards Dion, or does he just push back, and in so doing, buttress Dion?