Liberals launch attack ad against Stephen Harper’s attempts at Senate reform

·Politics Reporter

It looks like the Justin Trudeau Liberals are doubling-down on the Senate issue.

Late last week, the party released this new radio attack ad targeting Stephen Harper's reform woes.

The ad comes in response to the historic Supreme Court decision, 10 days ago, which stymied Tory efforts to reform the upper chamber with term limits and elections. The country's chief justices ruled that Parliament alone could not reform or abolish the Senate; that they would have to get the provinces on side.

"Our radio ad is speaking to Canadians who are disappointed with Stephen Harper’s backtracking and flip-flopping on his 8-year-old promise of Senate reform," notes a blurb at Liberal.ca.

"These are good Canadians — your neighbours — who have supported the Conservative Party, but want to hear someone has a better plan."

[ Related: Stephen Harper’s five options following the Supreme Court Senate decision ]

The online fundraising plea, to help broadcast these ads across the country, links to Trudeau's Senate plan which includes releasing senators from partisan activities and implementing a "public process" to appoint members to the red chamber.

Meanwhile, according to iPolitics, Trudeau is consulting with experts about how to make the plan work, constitutionality.

"Some good legal minds and political minds are working on the fine tuning," the University of Ottawa's Errol Mendes told the political website.

"It may take a couple of months."

[ Related: Why Conservatives’ anti-Trudeau attack ads may be helping the Liberals ]

An ad campaign focused on the Senate is a clever move.

While it might not be a ballot box issue for most of us come 2015, the Senate scandals have captured public attention and will continue to do so as the RCMP investigations and/or court cases into the activities of Mike Duffy, Pamela Wallin, Patrick Brazeau and Mac Harb continue.

It's also an issue that only the Liberals have any credibility on: Stephen Harper has appointed 57 senators — including a cadre of Tory-insiders and failed candidates — while the NDP plan to get rid of the Senate looks almost impossible at this point.

There was a poll, released over the weekend, suggesting that the Conservative party ads attacking Justin Trudeau's lack of experience were not working.

These ads might be a little more effective.

(Photo courtesy of the Canadian Press)

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