Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION
NDP bait and switch
The NDP has just launched what it's calling its Fairer Deal for Renters campaign. Flyers and emails (like the one below) are appearing in people's mailboxes directing them to a website where citizens can fill out a brief survey on how to fix the province's rental crisis.
How great is that!? Finally, the NDP is taking action on what's arguably the city's most pressing poverty problem -- our complete lack of decent, affordable rental units. Maybe the NDP is planning to tackle some of the recommendations smart people have made in recent years to fix this! Hallelujah!
Except the campaign is the most offensive kind of bogus. It's just a bait-and-switch push poll designed to pad the NDP's list of supporters. The website does nothing but promote the small tweaks the NDP already made to landlord-tenant rules, and then it asks which of the party's well-established and totally unrelated campaign promises you like best, including several meant as backhanded attempts to demonize the Conservatives.
It's one thing not to care much about poor renters. It's another thing entirely to use their issues as a marketing strategy to build up your pre-election warchest. At best, cheesy. At worst, shameful.
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About Mary Agnes Welch
Mary Agnes Welch joined the Free Press in 2002, first covering city hall and then the Manitoba legislature before moving to her current post as public policy reporter. Before Winnipeg, she worked at the Windsor Star and the Odessa American, a small daily newspaper in West Texas. There, in addition to covering more than 20 counties, she took high school football scores from coaches all over West Texas by phone every Friday night.
Mary Agnes is a graduate of Columbia University’s journalism school. She has been part of two teams of reporters nominated for a Michener Award. In 2011, 2012 and 2013 she was nominated for a National Newspaper Award in the beat category.
She was a Southam journalism fellow at the University of Toronto’s Massey College in 2012-13, where she studied indigenous issues, urban planning and political science. She is also the former national president of the Canadian Association of Journalists and has served on several boards.
She once misspelled "Shih Tzu" in the paper and received 37 emails from angry dog-owners.
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