Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Taking pulse as campaign rolls on

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STEPHEN Harper isn't the only one stopping by Tim Hortons to take the pulse of voters. The Free Press checked in with the voters at a Tim's in Winnipeg South Centre to see if the second week of the federal election campaign has bumped anyone's heart rate up.

The riding made headlines recently with the official announcement that Joyce Bateman, the former Winnipeg School Division chairwoman and longtime trustee, is running for the Conservatives against Liberal incumbent Anita Neville. We visited the Tim's on Waverley Street Monday to ask voters a few questions.

 

Carol Trowski, Retired, longtime Conservative and riding resident

1. Have your perceptions of Michael Ignatieff changed during this campaign?

Not one bit -- she still doesn't care for him.

"I'm not really sure what his platforms are," said Trowski, who hasn't warmed up to the Liberal leader at all. Ignatieff, who comes from an affluent background, says he want to help the poor but doesn't know what it's like to be poor, she said.

"He can't really understand or relate to blue-collar working people."

2. Do you buy Liberal/NDP arguments that Harper is a control freak?

"Sometimes I feel he's not running the country very democratically," said Trowski, who lives in Winnipeg South Centre.

3. Are you comfortable with the prospects of another minority government or would you prefer your vote to lead to a majority?

"I would like to see a majority."

4. Who's got momentum so far?

"I think the Tories do. I think they're going to win and have the majority."

Cathy Kusheryk, retired, Liberal party supporter, wouldn't identify her riding

1. Have your perceptions of Michael Ignatieff changed during this campaign?

"No. I've heard him speak in person and he's thoughtful and informed." That doesn't always come across in the short sound bites that make the TV news, though, she said.

2. Do you buy Liberal/NDP arguments that Harper is a control freak?

"Yes. He's a bully. He's not a very nice man."

3. Are you comfortable with the prospects of another minority government or would prefer your vote to lead to a majority?

"I do not want a Conservative majority," she said. "I don't think the Canadian public will give them a majority.

4. Who's got momentum so far?

"The Liberals do. They've recently put out their platform." She doesn't know how the Liberals and the other parties will be able to keep all the promises they're making, though.

"An election campaign is, legally, the only time you can lie," she said with a laugh.

 

Ed Lemke, retired, lives in Winnipeg South Centre

1. Have your perceptions of Michael Ignatieff changed during this campaign?

"Yeah, for the better. I like him more now. He was unknown before."

2. Do you buy Liberal/NDP arguments that Harper is a control freak?

"To some degree, yes."

3. Are you comfortable with the prospects of another minority government or would prefer your vote to lead to a majority?

"I would prefer a majority."

4. Who's got momentum so far?

Lemke said the Conservatives have had momentum with their poll results from the get-go but the Liberals are picking up speed. "Ignatieff was slow out of the blocks."

 

Luis Magalhaes, retired, lives in Waverley Heights

1. Have your perceptions of Ignatieff changed during this campaign?

"No. I still don't understand him."

2. Do you buy Liberal/NDP arguments that Harper is a control freak?

"I think that, as a leader, he likes control."

3. Are you comfortable with the prospects of another minority government or would prefer your vote to lead to a majority?

"I don't know." A minority government can get shut down and go nowhere, he said. "Parliament gets stuck."

4. Who's got momentum so far?

"The NDP and the Liberals," with their platforms and spending promises. "They're spending all the taxpayers' money but they're not responsible for anything."

1. Have your perceptions of Ignatieff changed during this campaign? Elaborate.

2. Do you buy Liberal/NDP arguments that Harper is a control freak?

3. Are you comfortable with the prospects of another minority government or would prefer your vote to lead to a majority?

4. Who's got momentum so far?

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition April 5, 2011 A4

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