Week two of the campaign begins very differently than week one, with the Harperites having decided Jack Layton’s New Democrats are the bigger threat to their re-election than the moribund Dion.
Layton is “beginning to challenge the Liberals as our primary opponent in a number of key areas," a senior Conservative campaign source said Sunday. "Not just during the campaign but in the lead-up to the campaign, the NDP has played the role of the principal opposition to the government while the Liberals were abstaining from votes and retreated in a number of issues, the NDP were standing firm and opposing the government vigorously."
Having the Conservatives focusing more and more on Layton’s growth and potential to grow is a significant game changer for the campaign. While Liberals will welcome not having to defend Dion’s carbon tax from both the governing party as well as from voters, they should worry about beginning to be forgotten so early in the campaign.