Best quote of the 2011 campaign.
And likely to remain so, even with 10 days to go till May 2. It's from Kinsella, captioning a YouTube of Harper in 1997 arguing the merits of governments formed by a coalition of opposition parties. Yes, the very thing Harper's trying to scare voters with now:
Stephen Harper: hook him up to a lie detector, and he’d knock the power out from here to Mexico.
It's the campaign's best quote because it best captures the unease many Canadians feel about the PM, including many people who ultimately will vote Tory.
That said, it's fair game - indeed, it's incumbent on the PM - to depict a scenario in which the party winning the most seats ends up not forming the government. And to ask voters to think about how they feel about that. A scenario in which the second- or even third-ranked winner of seats ends up leading the next government. A coalition government made possible only by the inclusion of a party, the BQ, dedicated to breaking up the country.
These are fair questions. The PM should be raising them and Canadians should be discussing them.
The intellectual dishonesty of Harper on this point - a point which is coming to be his chief message in the waning days of this campaign - is obvious when the PM makes out as though his own ouster by such means after May 2 is something, at least by inference, he has never contemplated doing himself to someone in his position. That is plainly untrue. Most voters by now are well-informed about Harper's heavy petting with coalitions among his party and others in opposition to topple a minority Liberal government. Coalitions that of necessity would have included the dread BQ, no less separatist in the past than now.
This Kinsella-captioned video simply reminds us of the Harper hypocrisy on this point for the umpteeth time. If Harper had only owned up to his erstwhile commitment to this perfectly legitimate parliamentary gambit, instead of having us believe it was some kind of "Dallas"-like "dream sequence" that never happened, than he might not have slipped into the Lyin' Brian regard so many Canadians have for him: