Recently Michael Ignatieff said the following on the subject of tax dollars going towards the building a new arena in Quebec City:
“If you want Ottawa to participate, you have to vote Liberal”
(Link in French as the English MSM have all but ignored it to this point)
I know what my opinion is of his statement and was going to do a big write up on my thoughts, but considering that I am not exactly a big Liberal supporter and I suspect that most of my audience already have a good idea of what that post would look like, I decided against it. But that got me thinking; how would others view Ignatieff's statement? So here is a short list of some who I think will be happy with it, and some who won't.
Liberal MP Joyce Murray must be absolutely livid considering that she tweeted this"another Liberal MP: "Harper's vote-buying stadium scheme in Quebec to benefit a right-wing media buddy: Quebec voters too smart to fall for it..." a short while back, and as far as I know "Harper" never said anything even remotely close to "if you want Ottawa to participate you have to vote conservative."
Poor Ian Davey is must be banging his head against the wall over this recent comment from his old boss? Because the last time a top Liberal, in this case Bob Rae, had made similar comments, Davey went on national television trying to spin hard for the Libs and ended up insulting a large swath of the Canadian population and hurting the Libs the process.
Liberal MP Keith Martin also can't be too impressed: "175 million for a hockey arena in Quebec City from the Cons! The PM is wasting our money..."
At least one Liberal blogger will not be too happy with Ignatieff's offer of tax dollars going into a glorified NHL arena, and there is a certain Liberal candidate for Edmonton-St Albert, Kevin Taron, who is already having a hard time dealing with questions on what Ignatieff said because of his very vocal opposition against funding the Quebec arena, including comments that all Alberta will be getting is the bill.
I am sure there is plenty more where they came from but being the fair and balanced blogger that I am, lets now look at a few who may happy with what Michael Ignatieff had to say.
Surely the millionaires will rejoice: “No public subsidies for the National Hockey League, no public subsidies for millionaires,”
Ralph Goodale must also be ecstatic as he said recently: "The federal Conservative government should be contributing "well in excess of $100 million" to a new domed stadium in Regina," and "Goodale argued it's certainly reasonable to expect Ottawa to fund in excess of $100 million (more than 25 per cent of the costs) of a new football stadium and entertainment facility. Goodale added he would be willing to take that request to a new federal Liberal cabinet." (From the Leader Post: link to story now dead)
And of course Denis Coderre must also be happy: 'Finally, le Journal reports that Liberal MP Denis Coderre is accusing the Conservatives of playing politics with the issue by dragging out the question of whether it will contribute to the financing of the arena: “This is a well-organized project that merits respect and dignity which means that the announcement should not be timed to win votes. They should announce it now.”
The people of Quebec: (But I am not sure on this one as it may be a toss up.)
While there is certainly a group who would be happy to hear what Ignatieff had to say, there are also a large number of Quebecois, who being very familiar with how the Liberal Party of Canada used to operate in their province with the 'I'll scratch your back if you scratch mine' attitude and with memories of brown paper bags filled with money being passed around in return for favours still in peoples minds, would find Ignaiteff's comment suggesting that if Quebec voters scratch the Liberals back by voting for them that public dollars for the arena will flow to be very disturbing.
Polls seems to back up my view on the way the people of Quebec would lean, but perhaps that may be why Ignatieff promised that he would spend money on a high speed train before he spent any on an arena for Quebec City.
Wait a minute. If Ignatieff said that he would spend money on high speed rail BEFORE spending any on an arena, does that mean that spending on a high speed rail line is already fait accompli? I wonder where Ignatieff plans to get the money for that, and when he plans to tell us about it?