Desperate Times for Vision Vancouver
There is an air of desperation around the tactics unleashed by Jim Green and Vision Vancouver this week. At least, I think that stink is desperation, because I’d hate to think these guys actually believe what they are saying.
It is an old maxim in politics that dirty campaigns start when one side begins the often unstoppable slide beneath their opponents in the internal voter tracking. It is the party on the downward trajectory that drags out the nasty photo, the stupid quote, the past drug use.
Or sometimes, as in the case of a glossy mail piece dropped in Vancouver mail boxes this week, the losing team resorts to outright falsehoods.
Sam Sullivan is a lot of things. He’s a tireless advocate for disabled and underprivileged. He’s is thinker – he doesn’t just blindly react to public opinion for the sake of opportunistic gain. He strives for balance. He builds relationships across the political spectrum, from all neighbourhoods, and among all walks of life in our city.
To insinuate, as Jim Green and his merry Vision band have done in this mailer, that he is anti-gay and anti-choice is like suggesting Santa Claus is a pimp.
That kind of campaigning may be ok in Alabama, but it is unacceptable in Vancouver. Full stop. If we condone this ugly business, we strip away our ability to build coalitions and work together. We will become polarized and divided. How can we build a city when we’re pitting people against each other?
Has Sam Sullivan made mistakes? Absolutely. Who among us hasn’t? Has he apologized? Yes. He has learned from them? Yes. I don’t see COPE or Vision apologizing publicly for their mistakes, because that takes real courage. It is far easier to conduct a drive-by smearing than look deeply in the mirror at one’s own errors.
Sam Sullivan’s campaign team includes Paul Martin Liberals, Jean Chretien Liberals, Joe Clarke Tories, Stephen Harper Tories, Mike Harcourt NDPers and many more – even those who aren’t involved federally or provincially, but who just care deeply about our great city.
To suggest for a moment that Sam Sullivan is part of some far-right nut-bar conspiracy is the height of lunacy – and anyone who has worked with, met, or talked to Sam Sullivan knows how far his opponents are reaching on this one.
It isn’t part of some conspiracy that Sam has been awarded the Order of Canada (by the Liberal-appointed Adrienne Clarkson). It isn’t by accident that he is the longest serving councilor in the City. And it isn’t because of some dark cabal meeting at the Vancouver Club that he has recruited a strongest, brightest, most focused group of candidates to ever run under a revitalized NPA banner.
Saturday is voting day. After this week, nothing will make me happier to see this election come to an end.
The friendly Larry Campbell mask has been ripped off Vision Vancouver and now we can see this party for what it is – a group of politicos so desperate to hold onto power that they are willing to employ the kind of tactics that most Canadians deplore.
(As seen today in 24 Hours Daily)