Week 3: This Week on the Trail· August 28, 2015
The Duffy trial wound down this week, leaving Canadians with a major takeaway: the levers of power in Harper’s PMO were controlled more tightly than anyone on the outside could have imagined.
Women’s issues were in focus briefly this week as the NDP suffered the brunt of an online barrage of criticism for skipping the proposed debate on women’s issues. This was coupled with Joe Oliver’s cancelled briefing to an all-male social club, where the LPC dispatched Chrystia Freeland to complain at the front door.
Deficits and spending dominated the rest of the week with the LPC announcing a deficit scenario attached to massive infrastructure investments. The announcement was well received by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities and big city mayors. Some commentators are skeptical of the political implications of the move, while others are hailing it as the start of a “policy based election”, as the Globe’s John Ibbitson tweeted.
There is an overall stagnation in the polls—indicated by the small movements within the margin of error in most polling—suggesting either Canadian voters are not focusing on the campaign so far or the parties have failed to galvanize voters with their policy announcements and attacks to date. — Ian Capstick