Rise Up Liberal Resurrection Rally, Featuring JC
As much of a Chretien fan as I am, game 7 won out tonight, so I'll be watching from home. But I'll try to live blog the highlights during commercials.
8:01 pm: Someone from the crowd chants "3 more years" as Ken Dryden takes the stage. Which, I guess, is a somewhat realistic chant in this era of minority governments. Dryden opens up with "nationally, we need help". Hard to argue with that.
8:10 pm: Dryden finishes an emotional and energetic plea to vote Liberal. Jean Chretien is introduced to a song I'm sure he's never heard before.
8:13 pm: Chretien - "In the 70s, the Canadiens needed Ken Dryden. Today, Canada needs Ken Dryden". With the Habs down 2-1, maybe they could use Ken Dryden too...
8:28 pm: Showtime. Chretien knifes the NDP briefly on national unity - "Now they are confused about the Clarity of the Act". I would have liked to see him develop on that a bit more. If there's anyone who can speak about the dangers of opening up the constitution and pandering to separatists, it's Chretien.
I think Coyne sums the speech up nicely on Twitter - "What Chretien and Layton are reminding us of in this election are the strengths of "career politicians" who know how to work a room and look like they're enjoying it". Honestly, Chretien's speech was far less substantive than anything Ignatieff has said this campaign - a bit of nostalgia and a few vague jabs at the Tories. But he was attacking with a smile on is face, and the crowd ate it up.
8:49 pm: Ignatieff does a good job outlining the Liberal platform, and does it with some fire.
He mentions how important it is to "help Matthew" 7 times. I assume this is Madame Paillé's son.
8:58 pm: Here we go - "Rise up! Feel the anger! Feel the heat! RISE UP!"
On the whole, a strong effort by Ignatieff. He sounded strong and forceful and laid out the case to vote Liberal. That's not of the utmost importance, since it will be Chretien who makes the newscasts, but at the very least this should energize the party's GTA base for the final weekend push.