Transcript: Welfare | May 14, 1995

The opening sequence rolls.

In animation, the words "4th reading" and "Election Watch" swirl against a red slate as pictures of different politicians show.

Steve Paikin sits in the studio with 4 guests. He’s in his late thirties, clean-shaven and with short curly brown hair. He wears striped gray shirt and a blue blazer.

He WELCOME EVERYBODY TO
4th
READING'
S ELECTION WATCH.
I'M STEVE PAIKIN.
SECOND WEEK OF THE ONTARIO
ELECTION CAMPAIGN AND A LOT
OF FOLKS ARE SAYING IT'S OFF
TO AN AWFULLY SLOW START.
THE WEEK FEATURED A SERIES
OF ANNOUNCEMENTS AND POLICY
STATEMENTS BY THE THREE
LEADERS, BUT MIKE HARRIS,
THE TORY LEADER, HAD A
THEME THROUGHOUT THE WEEK.
WELFARE.
WE WILL TALK TO OUR QUEEN'S
PARK WATCHERS ABOUT THE TORY
VISION FOR WELFARE IN
ONTARIO AND A LITTLE LATER
WE'LL GET A READ ON THE
CAMPAIGN FROM A COUPLE OF
QUEEN'S PARK JOURNALISTS.
BUT FIRST, WEEK TWO ON THE
HUSTINGS, STARTING THIS WEEK
WITH THE LIBERALS
AND LYN MCLEOD.

A caption reads "Liberals."

A fast clip shows images of Lyn McLeod speaking in public and greeting people.

She’s in her early fifties, with short wavy gray hair. She wears black skirt suit, a cream blouse and a gold brooch.

Steve says LYN MCLEOD SPENT MOST OF
THIS WEEK OUTLINING POLICIES
IN HER SLICK
NEW POLICY BOOK.
OVER THE WEEKEND, MCLEOD
WENT HOME TO THUNDER BAY
WHERE SHE ATTACKED THE NDP
RECORD ON HEALTH CARE.

Lyn says IT IS THE HEIGHT OF
HYPOCRISY FOR BOB RAE TO
PARADE AS THE CHAMPION OF
MEDICARE WHILE HE ATTACKS
ITS VERY ROOTS.

Steve says ON MONDAY, BUSINESS.
MCLEOD ANNOUNCED A 13
MILLION DOLLARS INITIATIVE
TO EXPAND BUSINESS
WITH FOREIGN MARKETS.
THEN ON THURSDAY IT WAS
BACK TO HEALTH CARE.

Lyn says WE WILL WORK WITH
HEALTH PROFESSIONALS TO
ENSURE THAT FUNDS ARE
AVAILABLE FOR ONLY THOSE
TREATMENTS THAT HAVE PROVEN
TO BE THE MOST EFFECTIVE IN
IMPROVING PATIENTS' HEALTH.

Steve says THE LIBERALS
ANNOUNCED 22 MILLION DOLLARS
WORTH OF PROMISES TO
REFORM HEALTH COVERAGE.
LATER IN THE WEEK, MCLEOD
DUCKED A HANDFUL OF
DEMONSTRATORS WHO WANTED
TO CONFRONT HER FOR
FLIP-FLOPPING ON THE ISSUE
OF SAME SEX BENEFITS.
AND FINALLY THE LIBERALS
DROPPED AN OTTAWA AREA
CANDIDATE FOR SO-CALLED
RACIST STATEMENTS HE MADE
IN EARLIER WRITINGS.

The caption changes to "N.D.P."

Steve says PREMIER BOB RAE ALSO HAD
SOMETHING TO SAY ABOUT
MCLEOD'S REVERSAL ON SAME
SEX BENEFITS, AND HE DID
IT ON HER OWN TURF.

Bob Rae is in his mid-forties, clean-shaven and with short straight white hair. He wears glasses, blue trousers, a gray blazer, white shirt and black tie.

Steve says RAE WAS IN THUNDER BAY
TO TOUR A PAPER PLANT.

Bob says IT'S THE REVERSAL OF HER
PREVIOUS POSITION SO -- AT
WHICH -- AND HER PREVIOUS
POSITION WAS A REVERSAL OF
HER PREVIOUS POSITION.
AND THAT PREVIOUS POSITION
WAS A REVERSAL OF HER
PREVIOUS POSITION.

Steve says THEN IT WAS OFF TO
CAMBRIDGE TO BREAK GROUND AT
A NEW TOYOTA ASSEMBLY PLANT.
RAE USED THE OCCASION TO
TOUT WHAT HE CONSIDERS TO
BE THE SUCCESS OF HIS
JOBS ONTARIO PROGRAM.

Bob says KNOW THAT OUR OPPONENTS WANT
TO STOP THE PROGRAM, AND WE
THINK THAT'S A MISTAKE.

Steve says AN ANGRY FARMER GOT
THE PREMIER'S ATTENTION ON
THE SHORES OF LAKE HURON.

The farmer says WHY ARE YOU NOT
DOING ANYTHING?

Bob says SIR, YOU DON'T HAVE
TO SHOUT AT ME.

Steve says AND LATER IN THE
WEEK, IT WAS A CONFIDENT
BOB RAE WHO ADDRESSED A
GATHERING OF UNION WORKERS.

Bob says LYN MCLEOD AND MIKE HARRIS
CAN MAKE ALL THE PROMISES
THEY LIKE BECAUSE THEY'RE NOT
GOING TO BE ELECTED PREMIER.
I AM AND THAT'S WHY I'VE GOT
TO SHOW THE RESPONSIBILITY
THAT'S IN PLACE.
[cheering]

The caption changes to "P.C Conservatives"

Steve says MIKE HARRIS ALSO WENT
HOME THIS WEEK TO NORTH BAY
WHERE HE WAS OFFICIALLY
NOMINATED IN HIS RIDING
OF NIPISSING.

Mike is in his late forties, clean-shaven and with short straight gray hair. He wears black trousers, a gray blazer, white shirt and patterned tie.

He says SO FRIENDS, JUST AS SURELY
AS YOU KNOW, WE ARE GOING
TO EARN ANOTHER
VICTORY IN NIPISSING.

Steve says THEN THE TORIES
DID SOMETHING DIFFERENT.
THEY SPENT THE ENTIRE WEEK
OUTLINING A SERIES OF
PROPOSED CHANGES TO
ONTARIO'S WELFARE SYSTEM,
FROM CORPORATE WELFARE...

Mike says WE PLAN TO GIVE
YOU NOTHING.
NO HANDOUTS.
NO SUBSIDIES.
NO DIRECT GRANTS.

Steve says TO CUTTING OFF WELFARE
FOR 16 TO 18 YEAR-OLDS.
THEN AT A TORONTO DAY CARE
CENTRE, HARRIS SPOKE ABOUT
HIS PLANS FOR HELPING THE
MORE THAN 400,000 CHILDREN
WHO DEPEND ON WELFARE.
AND THEN CAME THE
CORNERSTONE OF THE TORY
WELFARE PLAN.
A HALF A BILLION DOLLAR
PROGRAM CALLED ONTARIO WORKS
WHICH WOULD FORCE WELFARE
RECIPIENTS TO WORK
FOR THEIR CHEQUES.

Mike says THOSE WHO REFUSE TO
PARTICIPATE WILL NOT RECEIVE
MONEY FROM THE TAXPAYERS.

Steve says OKAY.
A MIXTURE OF TOUGH TALK AND
COMPASSION FROM THE TORY
LEADER, BUT WILL THIS KIND
OF POLICY HELP HIM GET
THE VOTES HE NEEDS?
WE HAVE ASSEMBLED A FEW
PEOPLE WITH SOME THOUGHTS
ON THAT.
YOU WILL RECOGNIZE A COUPLE
OF OUR REGULARS HERE.
HUGH MACKENZIE WITH THE
STEELWORKERS, NOW SECONDED
TO THE RAE CAMPAIGN,

Hugh Mackenzie is in his late forties, clean-shaven and with short receding wavy gray hair. He wears glasses, a blue suit, a white shirt and a printed blue tie.

Steve says AND
JANE PEPINO, LAWYER,
LONG-TIME TORY ACTIVIST,

Jane Pepino is in her fifties, with short slightly wavy gray hair. She wears a gray blazer over a gray and black top.

Steve says AND
PINCH-HITTING FOR PATRICK
GOSSAGE THIS WEEK, WE
WELCOME JOHN DUFFY, LIBERAL
STRATEGIST, AS THEY SAY.

John Duffy is in his thirties, clean-shaven and with short straight light brown hair. He wears glasses, a gray gingham suit, white shirt and printed tie.

Steve says AND WE'RE NOT DONE YET.
WE'VE ALSO INVITED GREG
VEZINA TO JOIN US.
GREG IS AN AUTHOR, POLITICAL
ANALYST, SOMETIME POLLSTER,
ONCE UPON A TIME CANDIDATE
FOR THE GREEN PARTY.
HIS MAIN INTEREST NOW IS
PROMOTING THE NOTION THAT
THERE ARE OTHER PARTIES OUT
THERE SEEKING YOUR VOTE
BESIDES THE THREE MAIN
PARTIES REPRESENTED
IN THE LEGISLATURE.

Greg Vezina is in his late forties, clean-shaven and with short wavy brown hair. He wears glasses, a blue suit, white shirt and printed tie.

Steve says SO LET ME WELCOME EVERYBODY
HERE TONIGHT, AND LET'S GET
THE SHOW ON THE ROAD.
THE TORIES HAVE TRIED TO
MAKE WELFARE A KEY ISSUE IN
THIS ELECTION CAMPAIGN.
DO WE THINK IT'S WORKING?
MISTER MACKENZIE, SIR.

The caption changes to "Hugh Mackenzie. Former Aide to Bob Rae."

Hugh says WELL, IT DEPENDS WHAT
YOU MEAN BY WORKING.
I GUESS I'VE BEEN FRANKLY
DISTURBED BY THE FOCUS ON
WELFARE IN BOTH THE LIBERAL
AND THE TORY CAMPAIGNS
BECAUSE I THINK IT REPRESENTS
A PRETTY TRANSPARENT ATTEMPT
TO PUSH FEAR AND ANGER
BUTTONS OUT THERE.
I DON'T KNOW THAT IT BUILDS
ANYTHING FOR MIKE HARRIS.
I DON'T THINK THAT ANYBODY
WHO WOULD BE -- I DON'T THINK
ANYBODY WHO WAS VOTING FOR
HIM WAS SURPRISED BY WHAT HE
DID THIS WEEK AND I DON'T
THINK VERY MANY PEOPLE WHO
WEREN'T THINKING -- WHO WERE
CONSIDERING VOTING FOR HIM
WOULD BE MOVED IN
THAT DIRECTION.

Steve says JOHN, WHAT
DO YOU THINK?

The caption changes to "John Duffy. Liberal strategist."

John says WELL, I THINK WELFARE IS
AN IMPORTANT ISSUE IN THIS
CAMPAIGN, AND I THINK
THERE'S A MANIFEST...
A SITUATION WHERE THE SYSTEM
MANIFESTLY NO LONGER WORKS.
THAT'S WHY THE LIBERALS HAVE
MADE IT VERY CLEAR IN OUR
PLAN THAT WE ARE GOING TO
DO SOMETHING, SOME PRETTY
SERIOUS REFORM
ABOUT WELFARE.
IS IT GOING TO WORK
NECESSARILY AS A
CONSERVATIVE ISSUE?
I'M NOT SURE.
IN THE END, YOU KNOW, THE
SELECTION IS TO NO SMALL
EXTENT REALLY ABOUT THE
CREDIBILITY, NOT JUST WHAT
YOU'RE SAYING YOU'RE GOING
TO DO, BUT WHETHER YOU'RE
ACTUALLY GOING TO DO IT.
AND GIVEN THE CONSERVATIVES'
CREDIBILITY PROBLEMS, I'M
NOT SURE THAT THEY'LL BE
ABLE TO SIMPLY BY SAYING THE
WORD WELFARE REAP THE
HARVEST OF VOTERS WHO MIGHT
WANT TO ACTUALLY DO SOMETHING
ABOUT FIXING THE SYSTEM.
I HOPE THEY'LL COME
TO OUR PARTY ACTUALLY.

Steve says NORMALLY I'D GO TO YOU HERE,
BUT YOU HAVE TO WAIT BECAUSE
THIS IS ALL
ABOUT YOUR STUFF.

Jane says I'LL BE PATIENT.
MISTER VEZINA, SIR,
WHAT DO YOU THINK?

The caption changes to "Greg Vezina. Author of ‘Democracy, eh?"

He says WELL, I FIND IT HYSTERIC
THAT THE LIBERAL PARTY'S
TALKING ABOUT CREDIBILITY.
I MEAN THEY WERE IN POWER
FOR FIVE YEARS AND DOUBLED
OUR SPENDING AND DOUBLED OUR
DEFICIT THEMSELVES AND THEY
COULD HAVE DONE SOMETHING
ABOUT THIS WHEN THEY WERE
THERE AND NOW THEY'RE IN
OPPOSITION AND THEY'RE GOING
TO DO SOMETHING.

Steve says WELL, THEY DID DO
SOMETHING ABOUT WELFARE
WHEN THEY WERE THERE.
THEY DID -- THEY MADE
IT VERY GENEROUS.

Greg says THEY SPENT MORE
MONEY THAN EVERYBODY ELSE.

John says IF I MIGHT ADD, AS WE
CHANGED THE WELFARE SYSTEM,
AT THE TIME WE DID SO
WITH THE SUPPORT OF THE
CONSERVATIVE PARTY WHICH
WAS LED BY MIKE HARRIS.
THEY VOTED FOR THE EXPANSION
OF WELFARE PROGRAMS.
I THINK WE'VE ALL CHANGED.
I THINK, ACROSS SOCIETY, AND
WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE
NDP, THERE HAS BEEN A SEA
CHANGE IN UNDERSTANDING
THAT THINGS ARE CHANGING.

Greg says DON'T DO AS I SAY, DO AS I
DO IS WHERE I COME FROM.
THE FACT OF THE MATTER IS IS
THAT STRATEGICALLY THIS IS A
SMART MOVE FOR MIKE HARRIS.
THIS WILL SOLIDIFY HIS CORE
MIDDLE MIDDLE RIGHT VOTE.
HE'S RIGHT THAT THERE'S A
LOT OF THINGS WRONG WITH OUR
WELFARE SYSTEM, BUT I FIND
IT INTERESTING THAT HE'S NOT
ONLY TAKING POLICIES FROM
THE REFORM PARTY NOW.
WORK FARE WAS STARTED BY ED
SCHREYER, FORMER GOVERNOR
GENERAL, AS PREMIER OF
MANITOBA, SO NOW HE'S TAKING
THE POLICIES FROM THE NDP, TOO,
AND I THINK THAT'S HILARIOUS.
BUT THERE'S A LOT OF IDEAS
OUT THERE FOR CHANGE, AND
THEY COME NOT ONLY FROM
THE THREE MAJOR PARTIES
BUT SOME OF THE OTHER
SMALLER PARTIES.
TODAY'S FRINGE PARTY IS
TOMORROW'S OPPOSITION PARTY.
THAT'S THE CASE IN OTTAWA.

Steve says THAT HAS BEEN THE CASE
IN OTTAWA FOR SURE.
OKAY.
THE QUESTION FOR YOU IS
WAS THIS WEEK'S SERIES OF
ANNOUNCEMENTS ALL
ABOUT SOLIDIFYING THE
CONSERVATIVE BASE?

The caption changes to "Jane Pepino. Ontario Tory activist."

Jane says I DON'T THINK SO.
I THINK THE CONSERVATIVE
BASE AS HE NOTED IS SOLID.
THE POLLS ARE TELLING US
THAT THAT IS THE MOST
CERTAIN CORE VOTE.
I THINK INSTEAD IT'S
EDUCATING PEOPLE ABOUT WHAT
IT IS MIKE HARRIS STANDS
FOR, ABOUT WHAT HIS VERY
SPECIFIC PLANS ARE, LETTING
THEM MAKE THE JUDGMENTS,
LETTING THEM UNDERSTAND THE
KINDS OF COMMITMENT THAT'S
BEEN MADE OVER
THE LAST YEAR.
AND I THINK THE FACT IS -
AND I AGREE WITH JOHN'S
OBSERVATION -- THE WHOLE
ISSUE OF WELFARE REFORM IS
VERY KEY AND IT REALLY COMES
DOWN TO A QUESTION OF WHO
HAS THE PLAN AND THAT'S WHY
MIKE'S BEEN SO PRECISE ABOUT
WHAT HE PLANS TO DO.

Steve says IF THAT'S SO, IF WELFARE
TURNS OUT TO BE A VERY KEY
ISSUE IN THIS CAMPAIGN, ONE
WOULD HAVE TO QUESTION WHY
THE CONSERVATIVES ARE
BRINGING IT FORWARD IN ONLY
WEEK TWO WHEN BY EVERYBODY'S
ADMISSION -- AND THE POLLS
CERTAINLY REFLECT THIS...
PEOPLE AREN'T ENGAGED YET.
DID HE TAKE THE BEST
ARROWS OUT OF HIS QUIVER
WAY TOO EARLY AND
SHOOT THEM WAY TOO EARLY
WHEN PEOPLE ARE NOT
PAYING ATTENTION?

Jane says IF THAT'S THE CASE, THEN HE
WENT TOO EARLY A YEAR AGO.
DON'T FORGET, THE COMMON
SENSE REVOLUTION WAS
PUBLISHED OVER A YEAR AGO.
PEOPLE HAVE HAD A YEAR TO
LEARN ABOUT IT, TO THINK
ABOUT IT, TO DISCUSS IT, TO
GIVE INPUT BACK TO HIM...

Steve says BUT THESE ARE ALL
FRESH DETAILS THOUGH.

Jane says THESE ARE
FRESH DETAILS AND...

Hugh says BUT YOU'VE GOT
A POSITION...

Jane says IF I COULD JUST
FINISH PLEASE, HUGH.
THANKS.
THESE ARE ALL DETAILS THAT
HAVE COME OVER THE LAST YEAR
OF CONSULTATION, AND I THINK
IT'S IMPORTANT BECAUSE
PEOPLE HAVE TO HAVE SOME
CHANCE TO UNDERSTAND REALLY
WHAT THE PLATFORM MEANS.
TO TEST IT, TO DISCUSS IT,
AND MAYBE THE NEXT TWO WEEKS
WILL BE SPENT ON
WELFARE REFORM AS WELL.

Hugh says YOU'RE ASKING
THE WRONG QUESTION.
THIS IS NOT ABOUT...

Steve says IT'S NOT
THE FIRST TIME.

Hugh says THIS IS NOT ABOUT THE
DETAILS OF WHAT PEOPLE THINK
ABOUT MIKE HARRIS'
WELFARE PLATFORM.
THIS IS ABOUT SYMBOLISM
AND MIKE HARRIS WANTED TO
POSITION HIMSELF AS BEING
A WELFARE RECIPIENT BASHER
EARLY IN THE CAMPAIGN
AND HE DID IT THIS WEEK.

Steve says BUT, INTERESTINGLY, NOT JUST
BY -- HE DIDN'T -- I WENT TO
ALL THE ANNOUNCEMENTS
AND HE DIDN'T COME OFF AS
MEAN-SPIRITED, AND IN FACT
AT THE BUSINESS ONE HE SAID,
THERE'S NOTHING FOR
YOU GUYS HERE EITHER.
YOU MAY THINK I'M THE
BUSINESS REPRESENTATIVE
HERE, BUT THE FACT IS, I'M
NOT HERE TO HAND OUT A LOT
OF SUBSIDIES TO
BUSINESS EITHER.

John says BUT LISTEN.
I THINK HARRIS IS HANDLING THIS
ISSUE RELATIVELY EFFECTIVELY.
I CAN'T REALLY QUARREL WITH
THE TIMING OF HIM DOING IT.
I MEAN YOU KNOW, WE PUT OUT
OUR BOOK IN THE FIRST WEEK
OF THE CAMPAIGN.
WHAT I THINK IS IMPORTANT,
THOUGH, IS THAT WELFARE IS A
KEY ISSUE IN THIS CAMPAIGN,
BUT IT'S NOT THE KEY ISSUE,
AND IT'S NOT GOING TO BE WHAT
ULTIMATELY DRIVES THE VOTES.
WHAT IS GOING TO DRIVE THE
VOTES ARE THE BIG BIG ISSUES
OF JOBS AND TAXATION AND HOW
YOU'RE GOING TO HANDLE THE
PROVINCE'S FINANCES.
THE CONSERVATIVES ARE HOPING
THAT WELFARE COMES INTO
THAT.
WE'D BE DELIGHTED IF WELFARE
CAME INTO THAT BECAUSE WE'VE
GOT A VERY GOOD PLAN.
BUT THOSE ARE GOING TO BE
THE BIG ISSUES AND THOSE ARE
THE ONES WHERE THE LIBERALS
ARE THE MOST CREDIBLE FRANKLY.

Steve says THERE'S A BUNCH OF PARTIES
OUT THERE THAT ARE TRYING TO
GET VOTERS TO THINK LESS
ABOUT THEM AND THINK MORE
ABOUT -- WE'RE TALKING
EVERYTHING FROM THE GREEN
PARTY, FAMILY COALITION
PARTY, LIBERTARIAN,
REFORM ASSOCIATION.
I'M GOING TO FORGET SOMEONE.
THEY'RE GOING TO
BE MAD AT ME.
FREEDOM PARTY, COMMUNISTS.
MARXIST-LENINISTS.
WHO AM I FORGETTING?

Greg says FAMILY COALITION,
NOT MARXIST-LENINISTS.

Steve says OKAY.

Greg says THERE'S SIX OFFICIALLY
REGISTERED, OTHER SMALL PARTIES.
NATURAL LAW IS
GOING TO COME IN.

Steve says CAN YOU JUST
GIVE US SORT OF A...
LIKE BRIEFLY.
GIVE US A LITTLE SAMPLING
OF WHAT'S ON THEIR MENU IN
TERMS OF WELFARE.
I KNOW THE TORY POSITION
AND THE REFORM ASSOCIATION
POSITION ARE DARN
NEAR THE SAME THING.

Greg says YES.
AND THE TORY POSITION IS
VERY SIMILAR TO THE FREEDOM
PARTY'S POSITION AND THE
LIBERTARIAN POSITION
IN SOME SENSES.
BUT IN OTHER SENSES -- I MEAN
THE ISSUE OF WELFARE REFORM
ACROSS THE POLITICAL
SPECTRUM FOR THE OTHER
PARTIES GOES EVERYWHERE FROM
THE COMMUNIST PARTY -- WHICH
I GUESS WANTS EVERYBODY ON
WELFARE ACCORDING TO A LOT
OF THE RIGHT WING -- TO THE
RIGHT WING PHILOSOPHY WHICH
IS THAT THE ONLY THING THAT
YOU DESERVE FROM GOVERNMENT
IS A MIRROR THAT YOU CAN
WATCH YOURSELF SLOWLY
STARVE TO DEATH IN.
SO THE OPPOSITION PARTIES'
POLICIES ARE SOMEWHERE IN
THE MIDDLE, BUT THE QUESTION
I'D LIKE TO REALLY ANSWER IS
THE QUESTION ABOUT PULLING
THE QUIVER OUT NOW
AND USING THIS NOW.
I THINK MIKE HARRIS HAS GOT
A FEW OTHER ARROWS IN HIS
QUIVER, AND I THINK WE GOT A
LITTLE SNIPPET OF IT, AND IT
HASN'T BEEN ANNOUNCED, AND
THAT IS DIRECT DEMOCRACY.
WHEN HE ANNOUNCED, WELL,
WE'LL CLOSE THE CASINO IN
WINDSOR, BUT BEFORE WE DO IT
WE'LL GIVE YOU A REFERENDA.
I WOULD LIKE TO SEE A
POLITICAL PARTY LEADER STAND
UP AND SAY, I'LL DO WHAT I
SAY, AND IF I DON'T DO
WHAT I SAY, I'LL GIVE YOU
A MECHANISM TO MAKE ME
DO WHAT I SAY.
NOW, WHATEVER LEADER OF THE
MAJOR PARTIES COMES UP WITH
DEMOCRACY AS AN ELECTION
ISSUE IS GOING TO WIN
THIS ELECTION.
AND I'D BE VERY INTERESTED
TO SEE IF IT'S HARRIS.

Steve says OKAY.
LET'S MOVE ON
FOR A SECOND.
WE'RE GOING TO COME BACK AND
TALK SOME MORE IN A SECOND.
THERE ARE A LOT OF DAYS WHEN
YOU REALLY HAVE TO SEARCH
HARD TO FIND NEWS ABOUT
THIS ELECTION CAMPAIGN.
SOME DAYS THE STORIES ARE
BURIED PRETTY DEEP IN THE
PAPERS OR ON THE
NIGHTLY NEWS.
MOST NEWS ORGANIZATIONS ARE
EVEN PULLING THEIR REPORTERS
OFF THE LEADERS' BUSES.
SO WHAT'S GOING ON HERE?
WELL, WE GOT TOGETHER AT
QUEEN'S PARK WITH A COUPLE
OF VETERAN JOURNALISTS
THIS WEEK TO FIND OUT.

Steve sits at the park with a Pauline Johnson and Bill Walker.

Pauline is in her fifties, with shoulder-length straight gray hair with bangs. She wears blue trousers, a red blouse and a gray blazer.

Bill is in his thirties, clean-shaven and with shirt curly brown hair. He wears gray trousers, a black blazer, blue shirt and printed tie.

Steve says GUYS, AS WE SIT HERE TAPING
THIS, WE'RE ABOUT A WEEK AND
A HALF INTO THE ELECTION
CAMPAIGN AND I'M STILL
RUNNING INTO PEOPLE OUT
THERE WHO ARE SAYING IS
THERE AN ELECTION
CAMPAIGN ON?
ELECTION CAMPAIGNS ARE NOT
SUPPOSED TO BE TEA PARTIES.
THIS HAS BEEN A
TEA PARTY SO FAR.
WHAT'S GOING ON?
PAULINE?

Pauline says IT'S NOT A TEA PARTY.
IT'S A SNORE FEST.

Steve says A SNORE FEST.

Pauline says YEAH.

Steve says WHY?

A caption reads "Pauline Johnson. Thomson News Service."

Pauline says WELL, I DON'T KNOW WHY.
BASICALLY -- I'M A
POLITICAL JUNKIE.
THEY HAVEN'T LIT MY FIRE.
THEY HAVEN'T
EVEN KINDLED IT.
SO I JUST THINK PEOPLE
ARE VERY CYNICAL.
THEY'RE NOT INTERESTED YET.
THIS THE CLASSICAL 17 FIRST
DAYS OF THE ELECTION IS
KNOWN AS THE PHONY ELECTION.
WHAT DO YOU THINK?

The caption changes to Bill Walker. Toronto Star."

He says WELL, I JUST THINK IT'S, YOU
KNOW YOU COULD CALL IT THE
CALM BEFORE THE STORM.
I MEAN THE PARTIES ARE OUT
THERE TRYING TO WORK OUT THE
KINKS IN THEIR TOURS
AND IN THEIR LEADERS.
WE'VE SEEN BIG GAPS BY ALL
THREE LEADERS SO FAR BUT,
YOU KNOW, BASICALLY WE
HAVEN'T SEEN MUCH IN TERMS
OF NEWS.
THE LIBERALS UNVEILED A
LARGE POLICY BOOKLET, BUT
OTHER THAN THAT...
I THINK YOU'LL SEE THE REAL
ELECTION BEGIN NEXT WEEK
AFTER THE ELECTION
ADVERTISING BEGINS AND
WHEN THE DEBATE IS
HELD NEXT WEEK.
THEN I EXPECT IT'S GOING
TO GET DOWN AND DIRTY.
THIS COULD STILL BE ONE OF
THE MOST NEGATIVE CAMPAIGNS
WE'VE EVER SEEN
IN MY OPINION.

Steve says EVERYBODY PREDICTED THAT.
I KNOW FOR THE LAST YEAR,
PEOPLE WHO'VE TALKED TO ME
ABOUT IT HAVE SAID THIS IS
GOING TO BE THE DIRTIEST
CAMPAIGN IN MEMORY.
AND IT'S VERY PEACEFUL
AND PLEASANT SO FAR.

Bill says THINK BACK TO OTHER
ELECTIONS YOU'VE COVERED.
I MEAN THERE ARE STILL THREE
WEEKS LEFT AFTER NEXT WEEK'S
DEBATE AND, YOU KNOW, I
THINK YOU'VE GOT TO REALIZE
THAT THE REAL KICK-OFF OF THE
NEGATIVITY IS USUALLY THE
TELEVISION ADVERTISING.
AND THE FIRST THREE WEEKS
THE PARTIES ARE ALL SAYING,
YEAH, WE'LL TAKE
THE HIGH ROAD.
WE WON'T GET DIRTY.
AND THEN BOOM.
IT HAPPENS IN ONE DAY AND
IT CAN GET VERY NEGATIVE,
AND YOU LOOK AT 1990.
BOB RAE WON THAT ELECTION
BY RUNNING TOTALLY NEGATIVE
AMERICAN STYLE
TELEVISION ADS.
THEY NEVER SHOWED
BOB RAE'S FACE.
THEY NEVER TOLD VOTERS
ANYTHING ABOUT WHAT BOB RAE
WOULD DO IN OFFICE,
AND THEY WON.
SO IT WORKS.
AND THE LIBERALS AND THE
TORIES ARE USING AMERICAN
CONSULTANTS ON THEIR
ADVERTISING, AND I GUARANTEE
YOU WE'RE GOING TO SEE IT.

Steve says SO STAY TUNED.
THAT'S WHAT YOU'RE SAYING.

Bill says I GUARANTEE YOU.

Pauline says BUT THE DIFFERENCE IS,
IN THE LAST ELECTION,
THE DEMONSTRATIONS
STARTED ON DAY ONE.
REMEMBER GREENPEACE BREAKING
INTO THE DAVID PETERSON
CONFERENCE THE FIRST
DAY ON THE BUSES.
WE HAD DEMONSTRATORS
IN BRANTFORD.
WE HAD EVERYONE.
THAT'S NOT HAPPENING THIS
TIME WHICH REALLY SIGNALS, I
THINK, THAT THE PUBLIC ARE
EVEN MORE CYNICAL THAN THEY
WERE LAST TIME.

Steve says I THINK THE FIRST
ONE WAS TODAY ACTUALLY.
A COUPLE OF PROTESTORS
AGAINST LYN MCLEOD'S
POSITION ON SAME SEX
BENEFITS TRIED TO BREAK INTO
ONE OF HER EVENTS AND
I THINK SUCCEEDED.
WELL, WE'LL SEE IF IT'S ON
THE EVENING NEWS TONIGHT,
BUT I THINK THEY SUCCEEDED.

Pauline says WELL, I THINK THE OTHER
THING IS, BECAUSE OF THE
LAST ELECTION, THE HANDLERS
OF THE CAMPAIGNS ARE
CHOREOGRAPHING
THIS VERY CLOSELY.
IT'S LIKE WATCHING THE
NUTCRACKER BALLET.
YOU WONDER WHEN THE WOODEN
SOLDIERS ARE GOING TO COME
TO LIFE.
BUT THEY'RE MANAGING
THE PRESS MORE.
LYN MCLEOD AND MIKE HARRIS
ARE NOT GOING OUT TO PLACES
WHERE THE PUBLIC ARE.
IT'S MAINLY, YOU KNOW,
SYCOPHANTS, SUPPORTERS.
BOB RAE, I DON'T KNOW IF
HE'S GOT A PUBLIC GO TO OUT TO.
BUT IT'S LIKE SOMEBODY SAID IN
THE PRESS GALLERY YESTERDAY.
HAL VINCENT, A
RADIO REPORTER.
HE SAID THIS IS SUPPOSED TO
BE A GRASS ROOTS CAMPAIGN.
BUT TO TOUCH THE GRASS ROOTS
YOU'VE GOT TO GET DOWN TO
THE GRASS.
AND THEY'RE NOT DOING IT.

Steve says WHY NOT?

Bill says THIS IS NOT A GRASS
ROOTS CAMPAIGN AT ALL.
THIS IS A HIGH
TECH CAMPAIGN.
NOW WE'RE SEEING CAMPAIGN
BUSES OUT THERE THAT LOOK
LIKE PORCUPINES ON WHEELS.
THEY HAVE SO MANY CELLULAR
TELEPHONE ANTENNAS COMING
OFF THEM.
AND, YOU KNOW, YOU HAVE THE
LIBERAL CAMPAIGN WITH ITS
OWN TELEVISION CREW AND WITH
ITS OWN RADIO CREW SENDING
OUT CLIPS AND TELEVISION
FOOTAGE TO STATIONS ACROSS
THE PROVINCE THAT CAN'T
AFFORD TO COVER IT.
YOU'VE GOT CNW FAXES
AND NEWS RELEASES.

Steve says CANADA NEWS WIRE.

Bill says YES.
YOU'VE GOT ALL KINDS
OF HIGH TECHNOLOGY.
FAX MACHINES AND
COMPUTER ONLINE.
IT'S JUST -- WHY TAKE ANY
CHANCES WHEN YOU HAVE THAT
KIND OF PRECISION?
I THINK WHAT THEY ALL WANT
IS THE PERFECT PURE CLEAN
MESSAGE TO GET OUT.
THEY DON'T WANT
ANY PROTESTERS.
THEY DON'T WANT
ANY REAL PEOPLE.
AND THEY WANT TO JUST
MANIPULATE THE OUTPUT
OF THE ELECTION.
BUT I THINK SOME JOURNALISTS
ARE QUESTIONING WHAT THE
LEADERS ARE SAYING AND DOING
AND THEY'RE NOT STAYING ON
THE PARTY'S SET PIECE AND I
THINK ONCE THE CAMPAIGN GETS
A LITTLE BIT MORE DYNAMIC,
AND THERE'S MORE INTERACTION
BETWEEN THE LEADERS IN TERMS
OF CRITICISM, I THINK IT
COULD BREAK DOWN
QUITE A BIT MORE.

Pauline says DON'T YOU THINK
IT COULD BACKFIRE?
I MEAN WE'VE GOT MIKE HARRIS
ACTUALLY READING FROM CUE
CARDS ON TELEVISION SO HE'S
NOT -- HE'S NOT LIGHTING
ANYBODY'S FIRE.
HE'S NOT COMING
ACROSS AS SPONTANEOUS.

Steve says ON THE OTHER HAND, HARRIS
WAS OUT IN OSHAWA YESTERDAY,
MEETING WITH SOME GM PEOPLE.
WITH SOME GM WORKERS, AND
THIS WAS AN UNSTAGED AD HOC,
LET'S PLAY IT AS IT
LIES KIND OF EVENT.
BUT YOU'RE RIGHT, IT
WAS ONE OF THE FIRST.
I THINK IT MIGHT HAVE BEEN
ONE OF THE FIRST WHERE A
LEADER MET SOME HONEST TO
GOODNESS REAL PEOPLE IN AN
UNSCRIPTED SITUATION.

Pauline says BUT OF COURSE VERY TIME HE
DOES THAT, HE SAYS SOMETHING...
HIS HANDLERS JUST GO
THROUGH THE ROOF LIKE
NO TENURE FOR UNIVERSITY
PROFESSORS OR OPENING CASINOS.

Steve says THAT PROBABLY WON
HIM SOME VOTES, PAULINE.

Pauline says IT PROBABLY DID.

Bill says THE THING ABOUT EARLY IN A
CAMPAIGN IS THAT WE HAVEN'T
EVEN SEEN A POLL YET.
I DON'T THINK ANY OF THE
PARTIES ARE PREPARED TO
START TO PANIC AND TAKE
CHANCES OR RISKS BECAUSE
THEY HAVE A SET STRATEGY.
THEY WANT TO STICK TO IT.
UNTIL THEY SEE THAT THEY'RE
IN TROUBLE AND THERE'S NOT
MUCH TIME LEFT, AND THEN
THEY'VE GOT TO TAKE RISKS.
IT'S LIKE, YOU KNOW, A
HOCKEY TEAM THAT OPENS UP
IN THEIR OWN END.

Steve says WELL, I HAVE HEARD ON
THAT SCORE THAT THE LIBERAL
ROLLING POLLS, THE DAILY
POLLS THAT THEY'RE DOING
ANTICIPATED A FIVE TO EIGHT
PERCENT DROP IN THE FIRST
WEEK AND IT HASN'T HAPPENED.
THEY LOST ONE POINT.

Pauline says RIGHT.

Steve says WHICH GOES TO SHOW YOU THAT
PEOPLE ARE NOT ENGAGED.

Bill says NO.

Steve says BECAUSE IF THEY WERE,
PRESUMABLY SOMETHING WOULD
BE HAPPENING.

Bill says NO.
THE OTHER THING ABOUT THIS
ELECTION IS IT'S ALMOST
AN ANTICLIMAX.
I MEAN WE'VE HAD SO MUCH
BUILD-UP TO THIS ELECTION
AND IT WAS GOING TO BE
LAST FALL AND IT WASN'T.
IT WAS GOING TO BE THIS
SPRING EARLY AND IT WASN'T.
IT WAS GOING TO BE AFTER
THE PAUL MARTIN BUDGET
AND IT WASN'T.
I THINK PEOPLE HAVE BEEN
SORT OF OVER SOLD ON THIS
ELECTION AND NOW, YOU KNOW,
IT'S HAPPENED AND PEOPLE ARE
SAYING OH, SO WHAT.
BUT I STILL BELIEVE THAT
WHEN THE TELEVISIONS ADS
START TO COME INTO
EVERYONE'S LIVING ROOM,
PEOPLE START TALKING WITH
THEIR COWORKERS AND THEIR
FAMILIES, AND THE PARTIES
START TO GET A LITTLE BIT
MORE NEGATIVE, THAT THE
HEAT WILL BE TURNED UP.

Steve says JUST DOWN TO OUR
LAST MINUTE HERE.
LET ME ASK YOU ABOUT WHY
MEDIA ORGANIZATIONS ARE NOT
STAFFING THE CAMPAIGN
BUSES FULL TIME ANY MORE.
IT USED TO BE THAT THEY WERE
ON THE BUS FROM DAY ONE TO
DAY WHATEVER,
41 IN THIS CASE.
NOW THEY'RE SORT OF GETTING
ON AT THE BEGINNING, GETTING
ON AT THE END, AND IN THE
MIDDLE IT'S NOT HAPPENING.

Pauline says THERE'S A SORT
OF A GAP, YEAH.
I THINK IT IS PARTLY BECAUSE
OF THE RECOGNITION WITHIN
THE MEDIA THAT UNLESS YOU
CAN STAFF EACH BUS FULL TIME
THIS IS BASICALLY A ROLLING
PRESS CONFERENCE AND YOU'RE
NOT GETTING A LOT OF
TIME ON THIS TOUR.
I THINK BILL WOULD AGREE.
HE'S BEEN ON THE BUSES
A COUPLE OF TIMES.
THAT TO GET OFF AND TALK
TO REAL PEOPLE YOURSELF.
AND SO NEWSPAPERS ARE IN
STRAITENED CIRCUMSTANCES
LIKE EVERYBODY ELSE.
THEY'RE TRYING TO USE
THEIR RESOURCES TO BALANCE
THE COVERAGE.
THEY'VE ALWAYS BEEN
ATTACKED, THE MEDIA, FOR NOT
GETTING AT THE ISSUES.

Steve says NOW THE STAR IS ON
THE BUS FULL TIME BUT YOU'RE
ONE OF A VERY FEW
ORGANIZATIONS IT IS.

Bill says YES.
AND WE WOULD NEVER CONSIDER
GETTING OFF THE BUSES.
WE REALIZE THAT IN SOME WAYS
YOU'RE A CAPTIVE TO THE
PARTIES, BUT ANOTHER WAY OF
LOOKING AT IT IS THE ONLY
WAY YOU CAN PENETRATE THE
ARMOUR OF A POLITICAL
PARTY'S POLICY IS TO GET IN
THERE AND ASK THE LEADER THE
TOUGH QUESTIONS,
AND WE DO THAT.
WE DON'T JUST TAKE THE PRESS
RELEASES AND REGURGITATE IT.
AND WE'VE DONE THAT SO FAR
IN THE ELECTION CAMPAIGN.

Steve says WHY AREN'T
THE OTHERS DOING IT?

Bill says WELL, I THINK IT COMES
DOWN TO DOLLARS AND CENTS.

Steve says TOO EXPENSIVE?

Bill says YES, DOLLARS
AND CENTS.
AND THE BERNARDO TRIAL'S ON
IN TORONTO RIGHT NOW AND
DIFFERENT THINGS HAVE BEEN
HAPPENING IN THE NEWS AND...
BUT I THINK YOU'LL SEE
THEM ALL COME BACK.
YOU'LL SEE THEM COME BACK A
BIT IN THE LAST THREE WEEKS
OF THE CAMPAIGN.
DON'T FORGET, WE'VE GOT
A LONG WAY TO GO YET.

Steve says THANKS, GUYS.
WE'LL TALK AGAIN.

Bill says OKAY, GREAT.

Back in the studio, Steve says NOW OBVIOUSLY SINCE WE TAPED
THAT -- AND IN FACT, I GOT TO
GIVE BILL WALKER HELL HERE.
HE HAD IN HIS BREAST
POCKET THE RESULTS OF THE
ENVIRONICS SURVEY THAT ENDED
UP ON THE FRONT PAGE OF THE
TORONTO STAR
ON THURSDAY AND
HE WOULDN'T TELL US WHAT
IT WAS AHEAD OF TIME.
ANYWAY, BUT THE
POLLS HAVEN'T MOVED.
IT WAS 52 FOR LIBERALS AND
26 FOR THE TORIES, 17 FOR
THE NDP, AND 24
PERCENT UNDECIDED.
SO THAT'S THE LATEST POLLS
AND THEY'VE BEEN THERE FOR,
WHAT, TWO YEARS?
THOSE NUMBERS HAVEN'T
CHANGED IN A COUPLE OF YEARS.

Hugh says WELL, THEY'VE BEEN
BOPPING UP AND DOWN.

Greg says AND FIVE
PERCENT FOR OTHER.

Steve says FIVE PERCENT FOR OTHER.
THANK YOU.
ALL RIGHT, NOW
WHAT CAN 'OTHER' DO?
IF THE THREE MAIN PARTIES
ARE HAVING TROUBLE RIGHT NOW
GETTING THEIR MESSAGES OUT
AND GETTING THE ELECTORATE
ENGAGED -- ADMITTEDLY
IT'S EARLY ON.
WHAT IN HEAVEN'S NAME DO
THE SMALLER PARTIES DO?

Greg says WELL, THE ONLY TIME THIS
SMALL PARTIES GET ON TV IS
WHEN THEY SUE SOMEBODY FOR
NOT LETTING THEM ON TV, RIGHT?

Steve says WELL, YOU DIDN'T SUE
US AND YOU'RE HERE TONIGHT.

Greg says YEAH, BUT HEY,
I'M NOT A PARTY.
I'M -- WHAT AM I?
I'M AN EXPERT PANELLIST.

Steve says OH, I SEE.

Greg says I'M NOT A PARTISAN.
NO, THE FACT OF THE MATTER
IS IT'S THE ELECTORAL SYSTEM.
I MEAN YOU LOOK AT THE
CLIP THAT JUST RAN.
THERE'S THE
TORONTO STAR
SAYING THE THREE LEADERS AND
THE THREE PARTIES.
YOU READ THE
TORONTO STAR,
THERE ARE ONLY THREE
REGISTERED PARTIES
IN ONTARIO, STEVE.
THERE ARE A FEW MEDIA
OUTLETS THAT ARE DOING
THINGS DIFFERENT.
YOU, TV ONTARIO AND CITY TV.
BUT THE FACT OF THE MATTER
IS THERE INHERENT BIAS BUILT
INTO OUR POLITICAL SYSTEM
THAT THE MEDIA AND THE
PARTIES GET TOGETHER AND
THEY VIRTUALLY SUPPRESS
ANY NEW IDEAS.
AND THE NEW IDEAS THAT COME
FROM THE SMALL PARTIES
BECOME PUBLIC POLICY.
I'M NOT SAYING THAT
WE HAVE TO ELECT THEM.
I'M SAYING THAT WE SHOULD
AT LEAST LISTEN TO THEM.
I'M NOT SAYING THEY SHOULD
GET EQUAL TIME, BUT I'M
SAYING THAT THEY
SHOULD GET SOME TIME.
AFTER ALL, WE'RE A MEMBER
OF THE UNITED NATIONS, AND
THAT'S ARTICLE 19
WHICH WE ALL VIOLATE.

Steve says I HEARD YOU MUTTERING
UNDER YOUR BREATH.
AW, COME ON.
WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?

John says WELL, I DON'T THINK THAT THE
IDEAS THAT COME OUT OF THE
SMALLER PARTIES ARE
IGNORED IN FACT.
AND IF YOU LOOK AT THE
HISTORY OF MULTI-PARTY
POLITICS IN NORTH AMERICA,
THOSE IDEAS -- AND I THINK
GREG WOULD AGREE WITH ME,
HAVE A WAY OF PERCOLATING UP
IN THE SYSTEM.
THEY DON'T TEND TO COME
THOUGH BECAUSE OF THE
ORGANIZATIONAL
ACTIVITY OF A PARTY.
THEY TEND TO COME FROM THE
INTELLECTUAL FERMENT ITSELF
THAT EVENTUALLY LEADS TO
THE FORMATION OF A PARTY.
I THINK IN TERMS OF THE
SMALLER PARTIES IN THIS
ELECTION, I THINK IT IS
GOING TO BE INTERESTING
WATCHING THE DYNAMICS
BECAUSE THEY HAVE TENDED TO
BLEED OFF VOTES OFF FROM THE
PROGRESSIVE CONSERVATIVE PARTY.
THAT'S BEEN -- I'VE
SAID THIS BEFORE.
I'VE WRITTEN ABOUT IT.
THAT THE PROGRESSIVE
CONSERVATIVE PARTY HAS HAD A
PROBLEM WITH SMALL RIGHT
WING PARTIES NOW FOR ABOUT
TEN YEARS IN BOTH FEDERAL
AND PROVINCIAL ELECTIONS.
AND ONE OF THE THINGS THAT
THEY HAVE BEEN TRYING VERY
HARD TO DO WITH THE COMMON
SENSE REVOLUTION AND
EVERYTHING IS TRY TO ABSORB
THOSE SMALLER PARTY RIGHT
WING VOTERS AND TRY
TO DEAL WITH THEM.
THE OBVIOUS QUESTION THOUGH IS
HOW MUCH DO THEY LOSE IN THE
MAINSTREAM IN THE PROCESS,
AND THAT'S SOMETHING THAT
WE'RE GOING TO FIND
OUT IN AN ELECTION.

Steve says IS IT TRUE, HUGH, THAT THE
NDP IN PARTICULAR NEEDS
THOSE SO-CALLED FOURTH
PARTIES, THOSE OTHER
PARTIES, TO STEAL A LOT OF
VOTES FROM BOTH THE LIBERALS
AND THE CONSERVATIVES OR YOU
REALLY HAVEN'T GOT A CHANCE
AT WINNING AGAIN.
THAT WAS THE SUCCESS
FORMULA IN 1990 ANYWAY.

Hugh says WELL, THERE'S A COUPLE OF
THINGS THAT ARE GOING ON.
I THINK ONE IS THAT THERE'S...
AND I THINK WE'VE TALKED
ABOUT THIS BEFORE.
THERE'S A PIECE OF THE
TRADITIONAL BASE VOTE OF THE
NDP THAT ISN'T AVAILABLE
TO THE PARTY NOW BECAUSE
IT'S A PROTEST VOTE.
AND IT'S A VOTE THAT VOTES
AGAINST GOVERNMENT AND FOR A
LONG TIME IN ONTARIO, THE
SAFEST VOTE FOR YOU IF YOU
DIDN'T WANT TO VOTE FOR
ANYBODY WHO WAS GOING TO BE
THE GOVERNMENT WAS THE NDP.
WELL, THEY DON'T HAVE
THAT VOTE ANY MORE.
SO WE HAVE TO FIND VOTES
TO REPLACE THOSE VOTES
SOMEPLACE ELSE.
NOW, IRONICALLY IN AN
ELECTION THAT'S AS MUCH OF A
TOSSUP AS THIS ONE MAY TURN
OUT TO BE, WHERE ARE THOSE
PEOPLE GOING TO GO?
BECAUSE THEY -- I MEAN I
THINK THAT THERE REALLY IS A
BIT OF A SENSE OF I DON'T
WANT TO VOTE FOR ANYBODY WHO
I THINK MIGHT THREATEN TO
BECOME THE GOVERNMENT,
BECAUSE THAT'S
NOT WHERE I STAND.
[laughing]

Jane says WE SHOULD HAVE
AN ELECTION TO GET A
GOVERNMENT, YOU KNOW.

John says LET ME RESPOND TO THAT.
I MEAN WHERE THOSE VOTERS
GO IS A BIG QUESTION BUT
THERE'S SORT OF AN
ASSUMPTION BEHIND WHAT HUGH
SAYS THAT IS IMPLICIT IN
WHAT GREG SAID AS WELL,
AND WHAT THE
JOURNALISTS SAID.
AND THAT IS THAT SOMEHOW THE
ELECTION ISN'T HAPPENING
BECAUSE THE POLLS
HAVEN'T CHANGED.
THERE SEEMS TO BE AN
ASSUMPTION THAT THE ELECTION
DOESN'T HAPPEN UNTIL THE
LIBERALS GO INTO A NOSEDIVE.

Steve says WELL, NOW HANG ON.

Greg says IN FACT, THE ELECTION IS
HAPPENING AND THE LIBERALS
AREN'T GOING
INTO A NOSEDIVE.
THERE'S A SELF
FULFILLING PROPHECY.

Steve says HANG ON
A SECOND, GREG.
YOU KNOW, THAT FIVE TO
EIGHT PERCENT DROP THAT I
SUGGESTED DIDN'T
COME FROM ME.
THAT CAME FROM YOU GUYS.

John says I UNDERSTAND.
I UNDERSTAND.

Steve says LIBERAL PARTY OFFICIALS
WERE ANTICIPATING
A FIVE TO EIGHT POINT
DROP IN THE FIRST WEEK
OF THE CAMPAIGN.
IT DIDN'T HAPPEN.

John says THAT'S RIGHT.

Steve says SO YOU GUYS WERE
EXPECTING IT.

John says BUT THAT DOESN'T MEAN THAT
THE ELECTION ISN'T HAPPENING.
THAT MEANS THERE'S SOME
OTHER DYNAMICS GOING ON.
I THINK ONE OF THE DYNAMICS
IS THE NON-EVENT THAT IS
THE NDP CAMPAIGN.
THIS ONE-NOTE JOHNNY THING.
I THINK A SECOND THING
THAT'S HAPPENING IS THE
CONSERVATIVES HAVE ONLY JUST
STARTED TO WORK WITH AN
ISSUE THAT THEY BELIEVE
REALLY PROFOUNDLY AND
STRATEGICALLY AND
THAT'S WELFARE.
I THINK TWO OTHER
THINGS HAVE HAPPENED.
NUMBER ONE, LYN MCLEOD
HAS QUITE OUTPERFORMED THE
EXPECTATIONS OF HER THE
BEGINNING AND NUMBER TWO,
THIS THING HAS COME OUT.

He shows the "Ontario Liberal Plan" book.

Greg says LET'S FORGET THE SPIN FOR
JUST A SECOND AND LET'S DEAL
WITH REALITY FOR JUST
A MINUTE HERE, FOLKS.
THE POLLSTERS' QUESTION, THE
SCIENTIFIC POLL IS, WHICH OF
THE FOLLOWING THREE
PARTIES YOU WILL VOTE FOR.
NOW EVERY POLL THAT'S
BEEN DONE SINCE '84 HAS
UNDERESTIMATED THE ACTUAL
ELECTION DAY SUPPORT OF
THE MINOR PARTIES BY
TWO TO THREE TIMES.
SO IN THE ENVIRONICS POLL
THAT COME OUT YESTERDAY THAT
SAYS THE SMALL PARTIES ARE
AT FIVE PERCENT, IF YOU PUT
THEIR NAME IN THE POLLS,
THIS SCIENTIFIC POLL...
WHAT A CROCK.
THEY'RE AT 15 PERCENT.
SO AS LONG AS YOU KEEP
SUPPRESSING THESE THINGS ALL
THE WAY THROUGH, THE ONLY
TIME PEOPLE SEE THEM IS
ON THE BALLOT.
WHO ARE THESE GUYS?

Steve says IF I CAN
EMBELLISH THAT.
I SPOKE TO KIM AINSLEY,
WHO'S THE HEAD OF THE REFORM
ASSOCIATION OF ONTARIO.
JUST BEFORE GOING ON THE
AIR TONIGHT AND HE SAYS HIS
PARTY IN LONDON
IS RUNNING THIRD.

Greg says YEAH.

Steve says AND HE HAS POLLS
TO VERIFY IT.
OBVIOUSLY AHEAD OF THE NDP
WHICH HE SAYS IS RUNNING FOURTH.

Greg says THE FACT OF THE MATTER IS
THAT THE POLLS THEMSELVES,
THE METHODOLOGY THEMSELVES,
AND THE CAMPAIGN -- HE'S
ABSOLUTELY RIGHT -- IS
TOTALLY STAGED AND MANAGED
BY THE PARTIES.
THEY WANT A NINE SECOND
GAINSBURGER ON THE NEWS, AND
THEY DON'T WANT ANY DEBATE
WHATSOEVER WITH VOTERS
BECAUSE IF YOU DEBATE
DIRECTLY WITH VOTERS, YOU
MAKE A MISTAKE, WHICH IS
HWY WE ANNOUNCED THE ONLINE
INTERNET DEBATE AND WE'RE
GOING TO PUT ALL THE PARTIES
ON THE INTERNET AND THE
PUBLIC CAN DEAL DIRECTLY
WITH ALL OF THE PARTIES.

Steve says WHEN'S
THAT HAPPENING?

Greg says WHEN'S THAT HAPPENING?
THAT'S HAPPENING -- THE
DEBATE IS JUNE 1st WITH ALL
OF THE LEADERS THAT CARE TO
SHOW UP, AND IT'S ALREADY
SCHEDULED AND THE ONLINE
INTERNET DEBATE STARTS ON
THE 18th AND YOU'LL BE ABLE
TO ACCESS IT FROM ONLINE
DIRECT, INTERNET DIRECT AND
CITY TV ON THE WORLDWIDE WEB.
SO DEMOCRACY HAS COME.

Steve says LET ME -- WE GOT, WHAT?
WE GOT A COUPLE OF
MINUTES LEFT HERE.
LET ME ASK ABOUT
CONSERVATIVE AND NDP PLANS
TO BRING OUT SOME OTHER KIND
OF DOCUMENTS AT SOME TIME
DURING THE CAMPAIGN.
I DON'T KNOW IF THEY ARE.
I DON'T KNOW IF THEY AREN'T.
THE LIBERALS HAVE BROUGHT
OUT THEIR SON OF RED BOOK NOW.
TORIES HAD THEIR COMMON...

Greg says DAUGHTER, PLEASE.

Steve says DAUGHTER, SORRY.
THE TORIES HAVE HAD THE
COMMON SENSE REVOLUTION OUT
FOR A YEAR, BUT I KEEP
HEARING THAT IN TEN DAYS TO
TWO WEEKS THEY'RE GOING TO
COME OUT WITH SOMETHING ELSE.
AND THE NDP, I HEAR, IS
WORKING ON ANOTHER NEW
DOCUMENT AS WELL, THAT THE
ECONOMIC STATEMENT BROUGHT
OUT THE DAY BEFORE THE
CAMPAIGN IS NOT THE LAST WORD.
COULD YOU ENLIGHTEN US,
EITHER OF THE TWO OF YOU?
HUGH, ON THIS.

Hugh says NO.
[laughing]
BUT I WANTED TO -- WHAT

Steve says ABOUT THE TORIES?
JANE, WHAT ABOUT
THE TORIES?

Jane says YOUR QUESTION WAS COULD HE
ENLIGHTEN AND DID YOU SAY
NO, YOU CAN'T OR
NO, YOU WON'T?

Hugh says I WON'T ELABORATE.
OH, OKAY.

Steve says SO SOMETHING'S COMING,
BUT YOU'RE NOT GOING TO
TELL US WHAT IT IS.

Hugh says NO, I'M NOT.

Jane says OR HE'S GOING TO
TELL US IT'S COMING.

Hugh says NO, I SAID I'M NOT GOING
TO ENLIGHTEN YOU ABOUT IT.

Steve says BUT IS
SOMETHING COMING?

Jane says SOMETHING'S COMING.
SOMETHING'S GOT
TO BE COMING.

Steve says SOMETHING'S COMING
BECAUSE THE PREMIER JUST
CAN'T CONTINUE TO GO AROUND
FOR THE WHOLE CAMPAIGN
SAYING I'M NOT
MAKING ANY PROMISES.
HI, HOW ARE YOU.

Hugh says ONE THING I
WILL SAY...

Steve says 30 SECONDS.
SORRY, GO AHEAD.
GET JANE IN HERE.

Hugh says WE CAN'T GO ON
WITH THIS, AND...

Steve says LEAVE HER SOME TIME.

Hugh says IT'S BAD FOR BOTH THE NDP
AND THE CONSERVATIVES FOR
THE CAMPAIGN TO CONTINUE
TO BE AS QUIET AS IT IS.
BECAUSE IF ONTARIO
SLEEPWALKS...

Steve says GOT ANYTHING
ELSE COMING OUT?

Hugh says LYN MCLEOD WILL
BE SLEEPWALKING
TO THE PREMIER'S JOB.

Jane says WE WILL CONTINUE TO BE
GIVING DETAILS, UPDATES,
BASED ON THE INPUT AND
DISCUSSION WE'VE HAD WITH
PEOPLE ACROSS THE PROVINCE
FOR THE LAST YEAR.
SO YES, THERE'LL BE
MORE STUFF EVERY DAY.

Steve says HUGH MACKENZIE, JANE PEPINO,
JOHN DUFFY, GREG VEZINA.
GOOD OF YOU ALL TO JOIN US.
SEE YOU OUT ON THE HUSTINGS.
WELL, WE WELCOME YOUR
COMMENTS ON THE PROGRAM.
SO PLEASE WRITE TO US AT:

A slate appears with a caption that reads "4th Reading. Box 200, Station Q, Toronto, Ontario. M4T 2T1."

Steve says OR REACH US
IN CYBERSPACE AT:

Another slate appears. It reads "Studio 2. Internet address: Studio 2@tvo.org."

Steve says I'M STEVE PAIKIN.
SEE YOU
NEXT WEEK.

Fast clips from the show play as the end credits roll.

Production manager, Wally Teska.

Show producer, Alex Bystram.

Director, Allan Myers.

NABET SNTC.

A production of TVOntario. The Ontario Educational Communications Authority. 1995.

Watch: Welfare