Are the federal Conservatives inviting Canadians to a Tea Party? A flashy new movie trailer-style ad that looks remarkably similar to one used by a former Minnesota governor begs the question.
Tim Pawlenty's ad, used for his 2012 presidential run, features historic clips of great moments in American history, fighter jets and sweeping shots of geographical beauty all set to a triumphant, pounding orchestral soundtrack behind his speech:
The former governor of course is a conservative Tea Party-supported Republican candidate. The Tea Party is an American political movement spearheaded by former vice-presidential candidate and Alaska governor Sarah Palin.
A flashy new Tory 60-second ad titled "Our Country" doesn't veer much from Pawlenty's concept, a similarity that was quickly posted by the Liberals to their YouTube channel.
The Tory clip features the 1988 Olympic torch relay, Paul Henderson's winning goal in the 1972 hockey Summit Series, more fighter jets and geographical panoramas of Canada's inspiring geography, matched with a black-and-white shot of marching soldiers.
All this is set to a powerful orchestral arrangement topped with a speech Harper gave last January to party faithful on the fifth anniversary of becoming prime minister:
"We want Canada to be a true north that is as strong and as free as it can be, in every way that matters - the best country in the world," Harper said in the speech.
A Conservative spokesman told the Globe and Mail: "We are proud of the ad. We are proud of our country. We don't comment on strategy."