Monday, December 19, 2005

When in doubt, promise anything

The CP's Trail Tales focuses on Stephen Harper's misinterpretation of a reporter's question...but the more telling part is Harper's ultimate answer:
Quebec City reporters asked the Conservative leader where his party stands on helping repair the Quebec Bridge.

One of the longest cantilevered steel railway bridges in the world is rusting and needs $60 million in repairs

As Harper answered in his second language, it became clear that he had misunderstood the question.

"A Conservative government would be willing to spend whatever is necessary to make the Jean Lesage airport a modern facility," he said.
Now, the Cons' website isn't searchable and doesn't turn up any results for a few related search terms - the closest was the Cons' security policy which includes upgrades to airport security. (If there actually is some backing to a promise of general airport upgrades at any cost, feel free to post it in the comments.)

As best I can tell, Harper's immediate reaction to the question he thought he heard was to promise whatever the reporter seemed to want, without either any party policy to back it up, or any consideration as to the costs or benefits involved. And that's open to only two interpretations: either Harper is so determined to win the election that he'll happily spend money without reason in order to win, or he's reflexively making promises with no intention of keeping them. Either way, that's not somebody who Canadians should want to see in control of the levers of government.

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