Monday, February 19, 2007

Tories To Pull Ads

Right on cue, the negative reaction forces a re-think:
The federal Tories will yank their anti-Liberal television attack ads off Quebec's French-language airwaves if there's a provincial election.

The party told The Canadian Press today that that it does not want to interfere with any provincial campaign

But the Tories deny they're pulling the three ads out of concern that they might be aiding the PQ.

They say they've held extensive focus groups that demonstrate viewers clearly distinguish an attack on federal Liberals from one on Quebec Liberal Premier Jean Charest.

They say they would temporarily shelve the ads only because they'll be less effective during a provincial election, when Quebecers are focused on provincial politics.

I'm pretty sure the "extensive focus groups" mirrored the media reaction to these tasteless, dishonest ads. Does anyone believe Harper wasn't privy to the Quebec election call? I have a feeling Charest may have mentioned it last week during the big presser. Why start an ad campaign with that knowledge? This excuse acts as though the Tories were surprised, come on! They just started running these ads, with FULL KNOWLEDGE of Charest's plans. Please.

This "decision" has nothing to do with taking the high road, it's simple recognition that the ads are having a net negative effect. In addition, the provincial Liberals may have expressed their unease at attaching their political prospects with gutter politics. Pulling the ads, under the guise of this election, allow the Tories to save face, without acknowledging the failure.


Karen said...

Actually Steve, Joel-Denis Bellevance said that they are planning on running them again after the election.

It'll be interesting to see what happens.

In the comments of your previous post, you said that Harper doesn't just disagree with the Lib's, he hates them. I agree with you and the more we see that play out on the National stage, I think the more uncomfortable Canadians will be.

(Of course Judy W-Leis is giving him a run for his money, lol).

Anonymous said...

Apparently they don't want the provincial Liberals to be mixed up with the Federal Liberals and plan to rerun the ads after the Quebec election.

Steve V said...

"Actually Steve, Joel-Denis Bellevance said that they are planning on running them again after the election."

Sure they are.

Canadian Tar Heel said...

Hi Steve,

I'd like to believe as you do - that the negative reaction towards the ads are the impetus for pulling the ads. Also, it seems convenient that the Tories launched the ad campaign so close to the provincial elections. However, I wouldn't rule out as a Party goof up. Either way I'll be glad to seem them go. I'm tired of them ruining my TV viewing.

Dan McKenzie said...

I think that the Tories were always going to stop playing the ads once the Quebec election started. I doubt very much that they're pulling them as of right now, and that they're doing so because of a couple of editorials.

But that's just my read.

Steve V said...

It's speculation of course, but I don't see a goof up as credible. Charest and Harper have been working in concert for months, and last week's announcement in Quebec was clearly tied to an election call.

In my view, the ads have run for a few days, they are starting to get negative testing feedback, coupled with the MSM negative coverage and this leads them to this answer.

Anonymous said...

This is good. Thanks Steve for letting us know. Curious over the reasoning and the motivation by the Harper Cons.

I have posted on my blog the importance of the week of March 20 -26. The brackets on the week will be the Harper Budget and the Quebec election. Could change Canada as we know it.

Steve V said...

It couldn't possibly have anything to do with principle.

Anonymous said...

Anybody come to think that the intention was just to get media attention for the ads - and that there was no real intention to run the ads in Quebec over a long period in the first place? Think about it. Quebec knows Dion well enough to begin with. He's defined as the Professor or The Rat. Whereas his indentity to Candians elsewhwere is somewhat scant.