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Jabs and jobs abound as Ontario parties launch their TV and radio campaign ads

Ontario Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak, Liberal Premier Kathleen Wynne and NDP Leader Andrea Horwath.


Ontario's political parties vying for the attention of voters have begun rolling out their TV and radio spots.

At midnight on Wednesday, the advertising blackout for traditional media ended, opening up the floodgates for the campaign ads.

The PC, Liberal and NDP parties all posted their campaign ads online prior to the end of the blackout, which doesn't prohibit material being shared online.

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It marks a turning point in the campaign as the looming election on June 12 becomes harder for voters to ignore.

Liberal Leader Kathleen Wynne stars in and narrates her party's first TV spot, boasting its plans to create jobs and start a provincial pension plan. She then takes aim at the Tories, saying PC Leader Tim Hudak's plan to cut 100,000 jobs will make classrooms crowded and cut teachers and health care.

"Those are the choices in this election. I want to build Ontario up, not tear it down," she says.

The grits also fired at Mr. Hudak in an earlier Web spot, aligning him with former PC premier Mike Harris and questioning if his promises will be fulfilled.

Along with the TV ad, the Liberals have 35 radio spots narrated by Ms. Wynne with targeted messaging for different areas of the province.

The NDP's first ad focuses an attack on the Liberal Party, with a rolling tally of money the Liberal government spent on such political gaffes as the eHealth, ORNGE and gas plant scandals. A voiceover tells the audience it is looking at "10 years of Liberal mismanagement," before asking if it's ready to "put the Liberals in the penalty box." The commercial ends by quickly encouraging a vote for Leader Andrea Horwath.

The PC's first online spot features the audio of a speech by Mr. Hudak offering voters a "choice for hope," while taking a subtle dig at the government by altering "rather than further decline." The second ad includes three actors portraying unemployed professionals expressing that they "want to work." It then cuts to Question Period speeches made by Mr. Hudak where he states there are one million Ontarians out of work and touts a need for change.

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The Liberals parodied the PC's job spot by overlaying their own audio indicating the three individuals lost their jobs as part of Mr. Hudak's planned 100,000 cuts to public-sector jobs, but it was quickly removed from YouTube due to a copyright claim from the PC Party.

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