Skip to main content

Then-Liberal leader Stephane Dion and his wife Janine Krieber walk near their hotel in Vancouver on election day, October 14, 2008.

Perusing reports of Janine Krieber's anti-Ignatieff missile, er missive, this morning, I notice a discrepancy in the English- and French-language coverage.

In La Presse, we read that Stéphane Dion's wife may be thinking about joining the NDP - a point that Chantal Hébert also makes on her L'actualité blog . In English, there's no mention of what would be a rather startling development should it come to pass.

The translation of Ms. Krieber's Facebook posting has been available on The Globe website since Saturday, and I doubt that Anglophone reporters did not read to the end of it and see these words:

Story continues below advertisement

"I am starting a serious reflection. I will not give my voice to a party that will end up in the trashcan of history. I am looking around me, and certain things are attractive. Like a dedicated party that doesn't challenge its leader at every hiccup in the polls. A party where the rule would be the principle of pleasure, and not assassination. A party where work ethic and competence would be respected and where smiles would be real. Maybe I'm not dreaming."

The more likely explanation for the discrepancy in the coverage is the longstanding tendency of the media to give short shrift to the NDP - a tendency that is less and less evident in Québec.

The same phenomenon is noticeable in coverage of the prisoner transfer issue, which outside Québec has been taking on an increasingly Grit hue. That's surprising, in light of the absence from the debate of Mr. Ignatieff who, to put it tenderly, has some 'issues' on the issue of torture. It's also an undeniable fact that it was the Liberals who got us into the Afghanistan war, it was the Liberals who deployed our troops to Kandahar and it was under the Liberals that General Rick Hillier signed the first (and deficient) prisoner transfer agreement.

Let's be frank: Whether you agree with them or not, the NDP has been consistent in its opposition to the Afghanistan war - even after the 9/11 attacks, when it was not easy to take this position. And it was also noticeable, last week, that the NDP was the first party in Ottawa to call for a public hearing into Mr. Colvin's allegations - a bandwagon that the other opposition parties quickly jumped on to.

One of the NDP spokespersons, Paul Dewar, radiates sincerity on the issue - as opposed to the faux outrage one normally sees on our television screens coming from Ottawa. And, in Jack Harris, the Dippers appear to have an MP who can match Bob Rae in competence.

So let's give credit where credit is due. And, with the NDP riding high in the polls and even outscoring the Liberals in the Hochelaga by-election, isn't it also time for the media to take the party more seriously and give them a bit more coverage?

Report an error
As of December 20, 2017, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this resolved by the end of January 2018. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to