The Bombastic Nature Of Stephen Harper
"Two secret meetings in the prime minister’s office this month should become chapters in any crisis communications manual.
One is the wrong way to handle major problem files. The other highlights the correct response to big bad political news.
Shortly after the Robocall scandal broke, aides advised Stephen Harper to appear dutifully concerned and pledge full cooperation with any Elections Canada investigation.
He refused, angrily vowing to remain aloof and deliver a full-on head-banging assault against his House of Commons adversaries.
The prime minister then went forth and called them sore losers, blamed other parties for being Robo-culprits and dismissed all allegations of electoral funny business as a baseless, fabricated, opposition smear job.
He even demanded the Liberals surrender all their documentation while his party defiantly refused to cough up their records. Their bizarre rationale? Well, the Conservatives did nothing wrong, so why should they?
But as this controversy dragged on and Harper found himself unleashing a few erroneous smears of his own, another meeting was held.
This week Harper assembled all party insiders who would know everything about its election tactics. He went around the table and demanded they come clean if they knew of any dirty tricks. No confessions were forthcoming.
That’s when Harper suddenly changed the tone and his tactics. He throttled back partisan hostility and dropped the government’s opposition to an Elections Canada request for enhanced investigative powers. He even pledged to surrender his party’s records for the probe."