Regardless of whether the Liberal Party runs its “flag up” in the next election, it doesn’t appear likely to be forming a majority government. Which means that following another loss at the polls, the Liberals may be faced again with the option of doing deal with the NDP. And since the Conservatives know this is the likeliest contingency plan for any future electoral loss for the Liberal Party, you can be assured the war room will be hammering that point home every single opportunity it gets.
With that signature on the December document from the failed coup of 2008, it doesn’t matter what the Liberal leader says at this point. He has shown his willingness, whether reluctant or otherwise, to put his support behind such a prospect.
Mr. Ignatieff’s latest staement will now frame any debate on the subject of his candidacy for Prime Minister. While “plan A” may be to win the most votes in the next election and form the government, it’s clear that “plan B” will be to entertain the options of forming an alliance with the other parties.
Nobody will able to seriously entertain plan A without also considering plan B. That may very well drive more votes in the direction of the Conservative Party.
There is a lot to learn from this article.
One, their point is valid – Pandora's Box has been opened, and the MCP demon set free for use and misuse by Harper's new Tories.
Two, the framing of Ignatieff having a Plan A and a Plan B is a good one (if you are a Tory) and a potentially devastating one (if you are a Liberal or one of the 60% plus voters who did not vote for the Tories and did not want a right wing Tory government).
Three, if the Liberals understand anything at all about framing and not talking about elephants, they need to get onto this Plan A and Plan B issue forthwith, and counter it with more effective framing. Or flesh out Plan B in a positive way, so that it wins votes rather than confuses voters.
Harper's strategy is clear: prevent any pre-election MCP talks between the LPC and NDP, and win more seats than the LPC so that he can continue as a minority government with the ad hoc case by case support in confidence votes of the Bloc, NDP and LPC, as he has done for four years.