May 19, 2004) OTTAWA
- A day after the Liberal party launched a series of negative ads focusing on controversial quotes from Conservative Leader Stephen Harper, the NDP released a new, upbeat pre-election television ad focusing on issues.
Like earlier NDP ads that were released in late February, NDP Leader Jack Layton is the centerpiece. But unlike those ads, which contrasted Layton to Prime Minister Paul Martin, the PM is not mentioned.
The ads show a video montage of Layton with everyday people while he spells out a plethora of party promises, such as removing the GST from "family essentials," tougher environmental laws and increased post-secondary access.
"Together we can build a green prosperous Canada where no one's left behind,"
The new ad is more of soft sell than the previous series of NDP ads. One of those ads contrasted Layton with the prime minister, calling Martin a "former shipping tycoon, friend of the privileged," who can't explain how Adscam happened, while Layton is referred to as "a fighter for the little guy."
Layton's press secretary, Karl Belanger, says that unlike the Liberals, the NDP plans on running a positive campaign on the issues and that its future ads, which have been shot already, will not be negative.
"It's positive ads with ideas instead of the negative approach the Liberals have taken," said Belanger. "So we're putting it out there what the election should be about and we're doing it in a positive way instead of going into the mudslinging that the other party seems to be on."
Belanger said the positive approach was not a deliberate strategy to counter the Liberal attack ads, as the planning for the ads came "way before" the Liberal ads were released.
As for the Liberal attack ads released yesterday, Belanger said it appears that Team Martin
may be reluctant to run on its record.
"I guess when you spend 13 years plotting for how to gain power and you spend six months realize that you are actually doing what your predecessor has been doing, it's hard to come with ideas, so they have to fall back on the attack style ads."
Check out these related links:
the NDP ad
the Liberal ads and the "Harper said" site
the "Team Martin said" site
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