With disarming candour, the legendary goalie and now Social Services Minister has sent out a note to his constituents at this late hour in the election campaign, acknowledging that things don't look all that great for his party, but wondering why that is. With sadness, he laments the potential Tory scrapping of the child-care program he negotiated...
"It's just a few days before the election. I'm anxious; on edge. Polls aren't votes. On Monday, we can all still vote any way we want, but somehow it doesn't seem that way. For days, I've been trying to think of what else to say, how else to put it, to all those people who I know still don't feel all that comfortable themselves.
It's time for a change. It's on election signs, in ads, in the media. It's in people's conversations. Said so easily, as if what more could one say.
But that's too easy.
Why is it time for a change? All the noise and nastiness, charge and countercharge, in this 20-month campaign, it can seem as if everything is wrong. Everything is bad. It isn't. Our employment growth, our increase in living standards, our productivity growth - all at or near the top of the G7. Our unemployment the lowest it's been in 30 years.
This isn't opinion. This just is. Two years of a good economy and it seems like a blessing. Eight, and it's inevitability. It's not.
Why? And most fundamentally to all of us, it's time for a change - to what?"
"Our country was built on great national endeavours - the joining of two great languages and cultures, the railroad, Medicare, the education system, the Charter of Rights. It's what Macdonald, Pearson, Trudeau - what our greatest leaders - understood."
"I don't think Mr. Harper thinks in terms of "great national endeavours." I don't think that's part of his understanding of Canada. I don't think that's what's in his bones.
Their announcements on child care, public transit, persons with disabilities - so limited. So limiting. He tells us to: "Stand Up for Canada" -- but what Canada are we to stand up for?
"Part of bringing out the best in people is coaxing, nudging, inspiring them to get together, to work towards something bigger than themselves, that stretches their imaginations, that gets them to do more than they ever thought was in them."
The railroad, Medicare, the education system, the Charter of Rights - Canada is a great national endeavour. We're a country whose greatest national endeavours are still ahead. I want big things for Canada. I don't want anything less.
It's time for a change. Why? To what?
We need to think hard."