Murray Dobbin recently posed the question "Reform democracy or rid the country of Stephen Harper?" in response to the Canadian reaction to the prorogation of Parliament.
The movement for democracy can only claim victory if it first dispatches Stephen Harper from the PMO -- simply because he is the immediate threat to democracy and will continue to be as long he is in office. Then the movement can work on achieving the reforms to the system so no one ever gets the chance to run roughshod over democracy again.
It is in this spririt that the Catch 22 Harper Conservatives campaign was launched. The Harper government has got to go. For the most part, the opposition parties have been ineffective in holding this government to account. Clearly it is up to us, the voters, to find creative ways to ensure our votes lead to the defeat of the Harper government.
The Catch 22 Harper Conservatives strategy is to target winnable ridings with weak Conservative incumbents, recruit volunteers and communicate with voters before the next election is called. The main premise is that an informed electorate will vote in their own interests, and not strictly in the interests of political parties, politicians and lobby groups. The strategy will benefit some opposition candidates from the NDP, Liberals and possibly the Bloc while remaining independent of them.
In order to have an impact on the next election, we don't need to influence every voter in every riding. Each party has a loyal base which cannot be moved. But by targeting specific ridings, polls and voters and getting our message out early, we greatly increase the likelihood of success.
NEXT: How federal elections work in Canada (detailed rationale behind Catch 22)
Gary Shaul is the Catch 22 campaign co-ordinator
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