Apologize already, and be done with it!
Stephen Harper's insistance that the PM supports child porn is not winning him any points among the undecided voters.
The only folks who don't seem to think Harper is losing his cool are this guy:
a greasy long-haired Thunder Bay Conservative that CTV news last night showed hopping out of his pickup truck and lunging drunkenly at Jack Layton yesterday, waving a bible in one hand, and shouting "Pedophiles!",
and the folks who seem to live permanently in the comment section of Andrew Coyne's website.
According to the Globe and Mail, Harper put the blame "on over-caffeinated youngsters in the party's election war room who have been working long hours for nearly a year".
That's odd, the party is less than 6 months old. Anyway...
Later Harper compounded his shame, saying "Mr. Martin misrepresented — I'm tempted to say he lied — about his position on this"
Maybe Harper thought this would be a juicy little campaign tactic, accusing the prime minister of supporting "kiddie-porn". I'm not sure that there has ever been a more ridiculous campaign trick, even the Chretien-face ads seem to pale in comparison.
It should be noted that Harper's Canadian Alliance voted against bill C-12, which was intended to improve the protection of children and vulnerable persons from pornographic exploitation.
Among other things, the Liberals' Bill C-12 increased the prison terms for people convicted of sexual exploitation of a minor, and gave judges greater decision-making powers in such cases, including looking at the age difference between the adult and the minor.
The only criticism of the bill offered up by Harper's Canadian Alliance, was that they felt the legal age of consent should have been raised. According to Alliace MP Gumant Grewal: "Just imagine a grade 9 student giving consent to have sex with a 60 year old person or a 50 year old person." (hansard)
OK, so I've tried to imagine it. While it is a frightening statement (Harper's Alliance has made a career of trying to scare Canadians with their "what ifs"), it isn't much of a frightening reality. I just can't imagine a teenager wanting to have sex with a 60 year-old.
The truth is that there are no laws which can stop something like that from happening. The laws in place, including the age of consent, are there to provide consequences for an act after it has happened. And in Grewal's case of a 60 year old and a minor, as I have already pointed out, the bill the Alliance rejected included measures to allow a judge to consider the age difference between the adult and the minor in sentencing.
So why is it that the Alliance voted against the bill? Using their own logic does this mean they support child sexual exploitation?
If he was a real leader, at what point would Harper look at the statement that was made by his agents about Martin and say, politics aside, this statement was incorrect, and denigrates Martin not as a politician, but as a man.
At which point would Harper have apologized if he was a real leader.
In fact, forget about being a leader, even as a good man Harper should spoken out by now to Martin, and said "I'm sorry".