TPP takes centre stage in campaign

By Ian Capstick · September 30, 2015

The Media Narrative

The emergence of the Trans-Pacific Partnership as a leading election issue comes as no surprise. The TPP’s arrival in the public conversation confirms this campaign has the most focus on foreign affairs than any previous election.

As details leak out of the negotiations in Atlanta, Canadian politicians are feeling the heat on the hustings. Yesterday, dairy farmers
dominated the political news as their tractors crawled through downtown Ottawa. They are demanding no concessions to market access for the supply-managed groups in Canada.

CTV News is reporting that sources at the TPP talks are telling Richard Madden the trans-Pacific trade deal would end tariffs on wide range of exports. The automotive sector is also concerned.

As the media continue their focus on polling, the NDP is being forced to react. CBC News reports the NDP has launched new ads and has set sights on Trudeau in bid to recapture momentum. The party is also intensifying the tour schedule in Ontario.

The orange team needs a slight refocus with parts of their message and are hoping that kicking out some really clever ads to help backstop some of the evident slide. Watch for a poll, rumoured to be released in the next few days, suggesting a breakaway for one of the parties.

There is an outlier of a story I’m watching today: CTV News is suggesting former Harper Communications Director Jason MacDonald may have violated conflict of interest rules. The exclusive story points to sources alleging he discussed federal contracts two months after leaving PMO. It’s the freshest ethics issue to face the CPC and it’ll be interesting to see how other media pick up the story.

Also worth noting: the refugee crisis has dropped from the media narrative, though it might be back in the days to come as breaking news this AM is the Russian parliament has approved military moves into Syria. Senior Kremlin official Sergey Ivanov ruled out the use of ground troops and said the step involved only the use of the air force.

Selected Headlines

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Adam Radwanski has a smart take on the CPC attack line: Trudeau bucking Conservatives’ ‘not ready’ line of attack

Evan Solomon takes a while to explain his thinking in 99ers and 51ers: Two numbers that could decide an election, but ultimately gets his analysis right when he concludes with, “Okay, I’ll say it: It’s too close to call. In the end, the only number that really matters? 170, the number of seats needed for a majority.”

A full collection of election opinions worth reading can be found on National Newswatch.


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