Morning memo: Ever the optimist, Harper looks at the bright side of an economic collapse



Another day, another poll showing the Conservatives losing support. This time, Harris-Decima’s got the goods, and it’s not pretty for the Conservatives. The survey finds high-income Conservative votes drifting towards the Liberals, while those in the lower-income brackets are looking the NDP’s way. It all adds up to a 10-point drop in support for the Tories since the early days of the campaign.

Conservatives: 31%

Liberals: 26%

NDP: 21%

Green: 13%

Bloc Québécois: 8%


Stephen Harper, on his mutual fund portfolio: “I would dread to look at it right now.”

Stéphane Dion, on the Green Shift measures he would put in place as prime minister: “He will, Stephen Harper, say that they are crazy, they are insane. There is only one economist who is disagreeing with them and he’s still prime minister, but hopefully, won’t be by next Tuesday.”

Jack Layton, on who’s responsible for the economic mess spreading around the globe: “Years of deregulation, recklessness, greed, and irresponsibility under conservative governments north and south of the border are coming home to roost. The greedy are being consumed by their greed.”

Elizabeth May, on Stephen Harper’s sense of timing: “It is beyond me why Mr. Harper would wait until the campaign is practically finished before putting his policies forward for the public to scrutinize. It certainly suggests he is not expecting an enthusiastic response from Canadians.”

Gilles Duceppe, on Stephen Harper’s sense of timing: “He delayed the publication of his plan so that it would get as much media attention as possible. That’s more important than his responsibilities.”


If Stephen Harper is truly attempting to appear more in tune with Canadians worried about the economic downturn, suggesting a plummeting stock market makes for “good buying opportunities” seems an odd way to go about it. Of course, Harper does have a point; it doesn’t take an economist to understand the “buy low, sell high” mantra of stock trading. But with little financing available to make investments, combined with widespread fears about home values and job security, the point is all but moot for most Canadians.


Stephen Harper will begin his day in Ottawa before heading to Victoria.

Stéphane Dion is campaigning in vote-rich Toronto.

Jack Layton‘s tour of the prairies will take him through Edmonton, Saskatoon, Thompson, and Winnipeg.

Elizabeth May remains in her riding of Central Nova.

Gilles Duceppe is in the Quebec City region, but will travel to the Saguenay before the end of the day.