2006 Liberal Party of Canada Election Ads - The Ads

The Ads

These 30 second attack ads were produced and aired by the Liberal Party. All featured a close-up picture of Stephen Harper with the sound of war drums beating. The ads focused on some comments from Harper's past and the Conservative platform. Most of these were denied by the Canadian public and media. Several articles, including one by Paul Wells of Maclean's magazine, indicated that the Liberals were grasping at straws, and that not all of the comments could be proven.

  • "Like Stephen Harper, Mike Harris had a right wing agenda. Remember the Common Sense Revolution? Remember the environmental neglect, the shattered social programs, the crumbling schools and hospitals, the huge deficits? Yeah, that Common Sense Revolution. Do we really want to go down that road again?"
  • "Who paid for Stephen Harper's rise to the head of the party? We don't know. He refuses to reveal his donors. What do you suppose he's hiding? We do know he's very popular with right wingers in the U.S. They have money, maybe they helped him. We just don't know. He just won't say."
  • "Gilles Duceppe and Stephen Harper worked together to bring down the government. Lots of late night secret meetings. Apparently, they're quite a team. Which is great. Because if Harper wins this election? He'll have to work very, very closely with Duceppe. Unfortunately, their unity won't do much for Canada's unity."
  • "This is what Stephen Harper told his American friends: 'Canada is content to become a second-tier socialist country, boasting ever more loudly about its economy and social services, to mask its second-rate status.' When he said, 'You won't recognize Canada when I get through with it,' he wasn't kidding."
  • "Stephen Harper spoke to a secret, ultra right-wing American think tank. In a Montreal hotel, off limits to press and public, he said, 'America, and particularly your conservative movement, is a light and an inspiration to people in this country and across the world.' No. We did not make that up. We're not allowed to make stuff up."
  • "Stephen Harper's stand on public health care? '... Provinces have allowed private health care services in the past. Why should I care? Why should the Federal government care how they're managed?' Seriously, that's what he said. Well, Paul Martin cares very much, Mr. Harper. And so do Canadians."
  • "Here's what Stephen Harper told some of his American pals about Canada's unemployed: 'Don't feel particularly bad for these people. They don't feel bad about it themselves. Not as long as they're receiving generous social assistance and unemployment insurance.' Not exactly the kind of compassion we're looking for in a Prime Minister, is it? A social safety net is a fundamental Canadian value, Mr. Harper."
  • "Stephen Harper's view of Atlantic Canada? 'Unfortunately, many people in Atlantic Canada feel that it's only through government favours that there will be economic progress.'He called us 'A culture of defeat.'And he said: 'Atlantic Canada needs Quebec to stay in Canada because of our weak economy.' Maybe we should choose someone who actually loves Atlantic Canada." (This ad was often played after one of the previous ads in the Atlantic region).
  • "From the Washington Times, Dec. 2, 2005: 'Canada may elect the most pro-American leader in the Western world. Harper is pro-Iraq war, anti-Kyoto and socially conservative. Bush's new best friend is the poster boy for his ideal foreign leader. A Harper victory will put a smile on George W. Bush's face.' Well, at least someone will be happy, eh?"
  • "Stephen Harper has made a lot of promises to a lot of people. Apparently, he's made a few too many. Now he admits he'll have to either raise taxes, or run a deficit to pay for them all. Wow. He's not even elected yet. And he's already running a deficit."
  • "Get a load of this. Stephen Harper once said: 'The Western ridings that the Liberals hold are dominated by either recent Asian immigrants or recent migrants from eastern Canada. People who live in ghettos.' We're not kidding. He actually said that."

The ads ended with a voice stating the Liberal campaign slogan, "Choose Your Canada".

An ad about abortion was also run late in the campaign. It claimed Harper was "against a woman's right to choose" and would not stop legislation criminalizing abortion.

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