I saw the most curious Tweet on Saturday morning.
It’s by Lisa Raitt, the deputy leader of the Conservative Party, and also the party’s Justice Critics. So, she's number two after party leader Andrew Scheer.
Well I’ve learned my lesson in tweeting anything about climate change. I’m going to be transparent & let you know I’m deleting the earlier tweets. I’m not the one to fight with on this because like most I believe that emissions cause climate change and we should reduce emissions
Over 1,200 people replied to this tweet. A few hundred retweeted it, and nearly 2,000 liked it. It got a lot of attention.
But so did her original tweets, the ones she clearly felt pressure into deleting.
What were they about?
Well, Raitt had tweeted a few mild statements about climate change, like this one:
“Bottom line is there’s no solid connection between climate change and the major indicators or extreme weather, despite Trudeau’s claims to the contrary. The continual claim of such a link is misinformation employed for political and rhetorical purposes”
Obviously that’s true. How could that not be true? Trudeau and Catherine McKenna literally blame fires that were caused by arson on global warming, to cite just one example.
And we know that average people in both Canada and the U.S. simply don’t care about global warming. Even Liberal MPS in Ontario say no-one cares, and they’re begging McKenna to give it a rest — they say the economy and immigration are the top two issues among voters they've spoken to.
So climate change would seem to be a great issue for the Conservatives. Sure, no global warming fanatic would ever consider voting Tory, so why not irritate them — and at the same time, win over the countless Canadians who either don’t care, or are actually sick of these jet-setting liars telling us how much they care about carbon?
How about speaking out with some courage? It worked for Doug Ford, and it just worked in Australia.
But my point is, whenever you blink like the deputy leader of the Conservatives did, whenever you give something away to your opponents — and renounce yourself, and everyone who is on your team and who hasn’t caved in yet — you demoralize your base.
And you thrill your opponents, as we saw from the reactions to Raitt's tweets.
Lisa Raitt says she’s "learned her lesson." How many times will that capitulation be used in campaign ads in the upcoming federal election?
This is no a way to win an election.
But really, this is no different than the Conservative Party losing their nerve on a half dozen other issues, including free speech, which they no longer seem to concerned about based on their conduct these past two weeks.
And all of this losing, all of this surrendering, before the election campaign even begins...
NEXT: Did you see the massive rally in Hong Kong over the weekend? Tonight, Gordon Chang (author of The Coming Collapse of China) one of the world's leading experts on China, joins me to talk about the state of Hong Kong's relationship with China.
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