1. 9:02 Martin looking shaky. Will he last the two hours, or be carried out?
2. 9:04 What's up with Duceppe? He's adopted some kind of cultured English accent. Can he be thinking of "going national"?
3. 9:05 Jack Layton let's the electorate know that the vote will be in 14 days. This is useful info. Thanks, Jack.
4. 9:05 Jack will put the "public back in healthcare". By this he does not mean that the patient will be at the centre, he means unions will be at the centre, and the public will pay for it.
5. 9:08 The PM favours"Honest, integrity, and telling the truth". (That last one surely said in jest.) The Prime Minister says that Mr. Goodale is the most honest person he knows. Is this to flatter Mr. Goodale, or is this a sorry confession of the calibre of Mr. Martin's circle of acquaintances?
6. 9:11 Mr. Martin looks very, very made up. (Everything with Mr. Martin is very, very.) Could, and this is getting X-files, could this be an animatronic replacement for the real Mr. Martin? Hmmm... Nah-- an animatronic would be more animated.
7. 9:14 Mr. Martin implies, without saying so, that the foreign taxes he's paying is not because of flags of convenience, but because his company has expanded out of Canada and become international. A nice spin. But very, very misleading.
8. 9:18 Mr. Martin goes for the jugular. "The Charter defines Canada and protects our religious freedoms". Then, the BOMBSHELL. Martin has such a low, cynical view of Parliament and the democratic instincts of this nation that he would remove from Parliament the "Notwithstanding clause". The Liberals are so DESPERATE to be re-elected they would jeapardize the future of the country.
9. 9:34 Layton: "tough on crime, but tougher on the causes of crime". Way to go, Jack. It's all our fault. Lock us up.
10. 9:35 Martin would BAN HANDGUNS and bad Mr. Harper would not. Mr. Martin is squirming; could his pants be very, very much on fire?
11. 9:39 Duceppe: "Healthcare is a provincial jurisdiction". Good one!
12. 9:41 Martin: But we've poured $41 billion into this. And, as proof that things are getting better, we've established benchmarks! In other words, we haven't actually reduced wait times, but, by gosh, we now have benchmarks, and very, very benchy marks, a that.
13. 9:45 Harper: Believes in the balance between the supremacy of Parliament and the Courts. He supports the continuance of the Notwithstanding Clause. Good for him.
14. 9:50 Martin: On the attack! Attacks Harper over past comments about Canadian socialism vs. the inspiration of Conservative Americanism. Pretty devastating, if people are paying attention.
15. 9:56 Martin: "The GST cut benefits the weathiest, not the poorest". Pants on fire, and nose growing!
16: 9:58 Jack is getting annoying.
17. 10:00 Martin: "Harper's GST tax cuts are going to a very select few." Right. Canadians who buy things.
18. 10:31 Duceppe: "We're different". Well, yes and no. Got their hand out to the federal government.
19. 10:34 Martin: "The Prime Minister has huge powers." Martin is being effective at portraying Stephen Harper as a risky choice. Sure it's scare tactics, and sure it's dishonest. But it may be effective.
20. 10:36: Duceppe: "Martin recognizes the Acadian nation and the first nation nations". Canada: new nations being formed nightly.
21: 10:37: Martin acknowleges the Metis nation. Update: Canada: new nations being formed by the minute. And has no problem referring to Quebec as a "peuple". Sounding a bit like Inspector Clouseau. But stops short of calling Quebec a nation.
22: 10:40 Martin caves and calls Quebec a nation, and insists that he has always done so. This should end the national unity debate forever.
23: 10:56 Layton contrasts himself with the Liberals and Conservatives who are bribing the electorate with "their money". Unlike the Liberals and Conservatives, Jack's NDP would simply keep the money and spend it as they see fit.
The Winner of the debate: Paul Martin
The Loser: Canada
And to all, a good night!