Earn our vote

The drama that accompanied the budget vote back in May, in which Independent MP Chuck Cadman saved the minority Liberals before going back home to British Columbia to die, certainly was lacking Monday night when the Opposition parties easily defeated the government and sent Canadians to their first winter campaign in a quarter-century.
It’s clear the initial tactic is the blame game—the Liberals saying it was Stephen Harper, Jack Layton, and Gilles Duceppe who forced this unwanted election on Canadians more keen on Christmas shopping than listening to party platforms. Those three, on the other hand, argue Paul Martin could have avoided the holiday stumping by abiding by an Opposition motion early last week calling for a trip to the polls on Feb. 13.
Canadians may not have wanted a campaign over the holidays, but they’re certainly not going to elect the next government over whose fault it was. Rather, voters want to hear solutions to our many problems, not who was to blame for past ones.
How will the parties get rid of corruption and cronyism in government? What will be done to reduce wait times for health care? Who will do what to rescue the beleaguered forestry, agriculture, and tourism industries? Where’s the plan to reduce taxes, reverse climate change, and give our military the equipment it needs?
Why, in essence, do the candidates—nationally and locally—deserve our vote?
If we’re going to be stuck with a Christmas campaign, let’s make it one of positive vision instead of negative mud-slinging.