Skip to comments.Martin disappearing quickly - Liberal candiates are obscuring their ties to once-sparkling PM
Posted on 06/21/2004 8:20:49 AM PDT by Clive
With one week to go before election day, there are signs everywhere that Paul Martin and his once mighty Liberal ship are sinking. Lawn signs, actually.
Across the country, Liberal signs, posters, Web sites and campaign junk mail are being altered to obliterate formerly dominant references to the Grit leader and "Team Martin."
A random survey of Liberal candidates' Web sites finds the great one of Gritdom evaporating into cyberspace.
Once happy to ride Martin's coattails, some Liberal candidates now can't seem to get far enough away, a rather poignant indication even Grit party faithful are getting desperate.
It is also a stunning show of just how far Martin's meteoric flameout has descended, from the Liberals' shining star to their smoldering liability in barely six months.
Conservative Leader Stephen Harper, not considered much of a vote-grabber for his party outside Alberta, has never featured prominently in local candidates' advertising.
But in Martin the Liberals trusted, his face and name held up to voters as the party's big draw. No more.
In ridings around St. John's, Nfld., Liberal candidates are now plastering their own pictures over Martin's mug on their billboard-sized campaign signs.
Grit candidate Siobhan Coady has bolted photos of her face on to her campaign signs, obliterating all mention of both the Liberal PM and his "Team Martin."
On a campaign swing through Quebec this past week, reporters played a friendly game of "I Spy" in search of any mention of Martin, even in his home province.
In Ottawa, a senior member of the PM's own cabinet isn't exactly waving his boss in voters' faces.
Campaign organizers for Defence Minister David Pratt recently printed one of his campaign brochures that does not even mention Martin.
A Pratt official said the brochure was strictly to describe Pratt's work as a local representative.
In Toronto, Liberal MP Dennis Mills didn't have to change anything to hide his ties to Martin -- the PM was nowhere from the outset.
From Ontario west to British Columbia, there are reports that campaign material promoting the Liberal leader is becoming about as scarce as Alberta votes for his party.
Candidates trying to hide their own party and leadership are nothing new, but almost always portend electoral disaster.
In the final throes of the 2000 election, Stockwell Day virtually vanished from local Canadian Alliance campaigns.
In 1993, Progressive Conservative candidates weren't just disavowing their connections to "Crashing Kim" Campbell, many were even hiding their party affiliation.
In 1984, John Turner's brand name was so tarnished by the final weeks of his disastrous Liberal campaign, Grit candidates had thrown away their lawn signs and were begging him to stay away from their ridings.
Anyway you read them, the signs say Martin is in big trouble.
Quietly praying that Harper doesn't **** things up in the next 6 days.....
I'm married to a Canadian ("Mr. sneakers" lol!) I pay more attention to Canadian politics than he or his family do! (they all live down here in the US).
I say: "Go Harper Go!!" I'll be praying for his election too.
Me too!! I actually think that Martin is so repugnant to the voters right now that Stephen Harper looks good. He most certainly will be getting my vote. Actually Stockwell Day is my representative and lives about 2 miles from me. He's a good man - he just wasn't a great leader. I hope that he becomes the Minister of Foreign Affairs myself.
I have noticed this going on also....more and more LIEberals candidates are disassociating themselves from "Team Martin" (on the signs)....actually, I have been SO TEMPTED to draw two little horns on Paul Martin's red head (on the LIEberal signs) -- to make him into the devil that he is! :-)
Martin is trying to act as if he is the new broom that will sweep away all the financial incompetence and misbehaviour of the Chretien government.
His problem is that the scandals are all financial and he was Finance Minister during the worst of them so it was mostly on his watch and we are entitled to assume that he knew or ought to have known what was going on.
Any reason why this is happening to Martin, now, and not the hideously repulsive Chretien regime after so many years of utter incompetence??
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