Andrew Scheer has released an open letter to Canada’s premiers, making clear that he will maintain and even increase the Canada Health Transfer and the Canada Social Transfer.
Scheer’s letter, like his recently released climate plan, is clearly a defensive move designed to insulate him from expected Liberal attacks.
Similarly, Scheer’s immigration speech was a defensive move, designed to protect him from accusations (totally unfounded) of racism or ‘pandering’ to prejudice.
At one level Scheer’s moves are understandable.
With much of the establishment media elites on the side of the Liberals, the Conservatives are seeking to protect their vulnerable flank on certain issues.
However, a look at the poll numbers seems to show that it’s not working.
Since releasing their climate plan, the Conservatives have watched much of their lead evaporate. And if they thought they would get credit from the Liberals for their “no cuts” promise, that was quickly thrown out the window when Finance Minister Bill Morneau basically accused Scheer of lying:
So, if the Conservatives don’t gain support for their defensive moves, and if they don’t get any credit for it, at what point do they stop trying it?
Instead of being defensive, the Conservatives can go on the attack.
For example, the Conservatives didn’t actually need to release a ‘climate plan.’ Instead, they could point out that Canadian innovation and entrepreneurship is already doing more than our nations’ fair share on the environment, and could point out—factually—that Justin Trudeau has failed miserably to meet his own environmental targets.
No need for a plan or any new regulations.
Unfortunately, by playing into the messaging of the Liberals “climate plan,” “climate crisis,” “cuts,” the Conservatives are on territory Trudeau is much more comfortable on.
Instead, by attacking, the Conservatives can talk about the real crisis in Canada—the Cost Of Living Crisis—a crisis that is being made far worse by the Liberals.
And it is a real crisis. With debt reaching record levels, bankruptcies on the rise, inflation (real inflation) growing far faster than wages, more and more Canadians are unable to keep up and are falling further behind.
Justin Trudeau has failed to address this crisis, and everything he does is making it worse. That’s where the focus should be, and every time the Liberals bring up another issue, they need to be asked why they’re hurting regular Canadians while enriching the corrupt elites.
No matter what he does, the Liberals are going to demonize Scheer and demonize every Canadian Conservative. Instead of being defensive, instead of playing on Liberal territory, Scheer and the Conservatives need to relentlessly battle to keep the national conversation on their issues, their territory, and on the real crisis facing the Canadian People.