Op-Ed: Globe and Mail — Vote Conservative but reject Harper

Posted Oct 17, 2015 by Ken Hanly
The Globe and Mail published an editorial endorsement of the Conservatives as they have done for several elections now but at the same time they reject Stephen Harper.
In power since 2006  Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper is seeking a fourth mandate  hoping to h...
In power since 2006, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper is seeking a fourth mandate, hoping to hold onto key Conservative support in the western plains and in suburban Toronto
Geoff Robins, AFP/File
One might think that this was a piece in The Onion, but no it is actually in the Globe and Mail. This is the fourth straight federal election in which the Globe has endorsed the Conservatives. The editorial claims the Conservative Party deserves another term primarily because of its economic policies but that Harper should go because he has been bad, bad, bad. The Globe then is in the anyone but Harper camp but at the same time wants to elect the Conservatives. Who said you cannot square the circle?
Harper, the editorial claims, has created a "rotten" governmental culture. His vision is "narrow." He exhibits "meanness of spirit." His campaign has descended into "American-style, culture war over niqabs and 'barbaric cultural practices." The editorial moans: “The spectacle of a prime minister seemingly willing to say anything, or demonize anyone, in an attempt to get re-elected has demeaned our politics." The Globe agrees with those who say it is time for change and Harper must go but insists that the Conservatives should stay: “It is not time for the Conservatives to go. But it is time for Mr. Harper to take his leave.” So when we elect another Conservative government on Monday the Globe and Mail calls on Harper to quickly resign.
This would be a novel move for a leader who wins an election. The Globe does not say what it will do if Harper does not resign. One article points out that the Globe's own editorial board has criticized the party countless times for being "anti-democratic, xenophobic, and opposed to Canadian values." Of course this is quite wrong. It is not the party but Harper whom they are criticizing. As the editorial concludes: The Conservatives have been a big tent party in the past, and they must be once again. Fiscally prudent, economically liberal and socially progressive – the party could be all of those things, and it once was. But it won’t be, as long as Mr. Harper is at its head. His party deserves to be re-elected. Perhaps this was a draft editorial left lying around that was supposed to be published on April 1 and mistakenly published on Friday.