Monday, October 20, 2008
Defining Dion: Why it worked
The Conservative were successfully able to define Dion for one simple reason. Dion’s English was not good enough and his accent very strong. Half of Dion’s sound bits were incomprehensible even to people whose first language was English. As for people who struggle with English, many would not have gotten a word he said. ESL students have a terrible time with accents and Dion’s was particularly pronounced. His inability to communicate turned him into a blank slate on which the Conservatives could write anything they pleased. The Liberal support in English Canada went down nearly 950,000 as a result. The Conservatives tried to pull the same thing off in Quebec, but Dion speaks French. The Liberal vote went up 94,000 there. The next Liberal leader must be able to speak both official languages flawlessly. That rules everyone from the last leadership convention out except for Rae and Ignatieff. Quebec will be key next election. Having a leader who speaks better French then Harper gives the Liberals the advantage there.