Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Gloves Off: Alberta Tories Run Attack Ad Campaign against Wildrose Opponents: Alberta Tories Run Radio Attack Ads

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Gloves Off: Alberta Tories Run Attack Ad Campaign against Wildrose Opponents: Alberta Tories Run Radio Attack Ads

Article excerpt

EDMONTON - Alberta's governing Progressive Conservatives are taking their gloves off in the run-up to the election, with radio attack ads calling the opposition Wildrose party dangerously irresponsible.

The ads, which begin airing on radio stations in Calgary on Thursday, denounce the Wildrose campaign, led by party leader Danielle Smith, to thwart controversial new drunk-driving rules.

They urge voters to think twice before marking an X.

"Danielle Smith and the Wildrose -- not worth the risk," intones the closing line on the 30-second ad.

Tory campaign director Susan Elliott said the misinformation being spread by the Wildrose on Bill 26, the Traffic Safety Amendment Act, could not be left unchallenged, especially after the Wildrose tied it to a gimmicky drink coaster campaign.

"We're very concerned about the message that the Wildrose would appear to be sending, that it's OK to have several drinks and get behind the wheel of your car and drive home," Elliott said Wednesday. "We disagree quite strongly.

"We believe this legislation saves lives."

While the Tories have rarely used attack ads during their 11 consecutive election wins dating back to 1971, Elliott said the ads are indeed a shot across the bow with an election call expected within two weeks.

"We're prepared to talk about what we've done, to talk about our record, and to talk about what we propose," she said.

"If we feel opponents are twisting those words or misrepresent us, it's incumbent on us to clarify it."

The Wildrose have been campaigning to repeal the law, which was proposed and passed within weeks late last year by Premier Alison Redford's government.

The law, to be implemented later this year, targets not only drunk drivers by imposing stiffer licence suspensions and administrative penalties, but also those drivers who are close to the legal limit. …

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