Premier Wacky-Waving-Inflatable-Arm-Flailing-Tube-Man had another one of those days today. Let's review the damage.
Our top story tonight concerns one Nikki Holland, senior Grit, contemporary of road-rage poster boy Michael Bryant, and supplier of cigarettes to people in shelters in exchange for Liberal votes.
"I have done crazy things," Holland says in the audio recording. "Like ... and if anyone repeats this I'll deny it (until) the cows come home ... I have gone to a shelter in the riding of St. Paul's with a carton of smokes and said, 'I'll give you them after you vote.' I have done that ... but they were already smokers."
In an e-mail sent to QMI Agency Thursday, Holland admitted she made the comments.
But the veteran political operative insisted she never actually handed out cigarettes to potential voters.
Instead, she said she merely "pretended" to have used tactics that in fact she heard other political parties use.
"During a presentation to a partisan audience I got carried away playing to the crowd," Holland said in the e-mail.
Wow. Hey, don't the Liberals pride themselves on their "tough" anti-smoking strategy? Doesn't the Liberal war room boss have a huge problem with tobacco lobbyists?
Oh, but that's not all. The Liberals, still reeling from the fallout over their power plant mess, panicked again and sped up the implementation of a tax credit for home renovations for seniors, which will somehow lead to more jobs. Hey, maybe McGuinty's hand jive during the debate was a manifestation of how nervous and jumpy the Liberals have to be about the election result? Or else why would they be flipping the script with a week to go?
Let's hear from Adam Radwanski on these recent Liberal own-goals:
Then last Sunday, two days before the leaders’ debate and just as Ontarians were starting to pay closer attention to their provincial election, the Liberals handed the other two parties a gift. Promising to scrap a gas-fired power plant being built in Mississauga, they gave the appearance of panic – undermining the “steady hand at the tiller” pitch the two-term Premier has been making to voters.
Even seasoned political operatives wondered aloud at how the Liberals managed to let a fairly marginal local issue throw them off message for at least a couple of days. The answer is that they were guilty of making faulty assumptions leading up to the campaign, and then weren’t willing to live with consequences that would have involved hanging one of their strongest MPPs out to dry.
What else on this enchanted night? Well, we have proof the Liberals are using bots on Twitter. And then there was that hilarious story about how the Liberals met with the cast and crew of "Murdoch Mysteries" to brag about how they are spending money to support the local film industry. Trouble was? "Murdoch Mysteries" got cancelled. Oops.
And if that wasn't enough, here's another opportunity for a fun filled round of "What's Wrong With This Picture?" This one's real easy, since the last one gave the Eric Hoskins campaign team a lot to ponder. I know, thanks to my hit counter. ;)
Finally, it looks like the NDP are leading or competitive in some key ridings. Which ridings? How about Sudbury, possibly the safest Liberal seat in the north? Or York South Weston, which looks like it will be overrun by the NDP? Or perhaps even, randomly, Bramalea Gore Malton? Yeah, yeah, this thing was paid for by Sid Ryan, but it should put the fear of heaven into a few Liberals, and that ain't a bad thing!
Can it be that the Liberals have been....um...blowing smoke all this time that people were fooled into thinking they were running a credible campaign? :P