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Attack on Justin Trudeau may get heated response from women

Tories already going after new political rival, but their tactic could backfire.
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Gord Woodward, April 16, 2013 4:25:56 PM

At last – a political party that is attempting to engage female voters in Canada!

Well, OK, that’s not what the Conservatives really are trying to do with the attack ad they unveiled yesterday, but it may be an unintended result.

The ad is designed to get electors thinking about the country’s Other Justin, Mr. Trudeau, the hottie, er new leader of the Liberal Party. By showing him shirtless, it will undoubtedly accomplish just that among female viewership. Assuming fantasizing counts as thinking.

It’s a tactic the political hawks borrowed from the Original Justin, Mr. Bieber, who also draws plenty of attention from women of all ages despite having the substance of air. (At first, they used to just sigh dreamily whenever they saw him sing. Now, his words still inspire sighs — but more of despair and disbelief than lust.) A little beefcake can never hurt when you’re courting the cougar and kitten vote.

There’s no dance choreography, but the ad shows Trudeau doffing his shirt, sporting a moustache straight out of bad porn, and amateurishly rambling through some poorly-scripted lines. Throw in a spanking or two and we’ve got a sequel to 50 Shades of Grey. Or a new skit for Saturday Night Live.

But, hey, it’s all about a fantasy. And what could be hotter for women than the thought of some late-night “door knocking” with a politician? (Well, just about anything else, probably. But that’s beside the point.) As we all do with any political ad, the ladies can just turn down the volume and feast their eyes on the scenery. There’s no shower scene, no fireman’s outfit or even a hint of a hose, but that’s the trade-off you have to make to please the network TV censors.

Politically, an attack ad that unintentionally showcases Trudeau’s hotness is an interesting strategy, presumably built on some misapplication of the widely-accepted theory that the brain is the biggest sex organ (which would make the House of Commons the biggest collection of eunuchs on the planet). Raising the sexual temperature a few degrees has not been tried in this vein very often in past, largely because our elected representatives tend to inspire feelings that even Viagra can’t overcome.

If sexy was what they were after, though, the Tories – a party in all senses of the word — could have used some examples from their own ranks in their ad. Like that little stud muffin, Defence Minister Peter McKay. And … um … and … .

Well, anyway, the point we’re making is that it’s about time politicians tried to engage with women. We’re not sure attack ads are the best way to do it, since they turn off far more people than they turn on. This one from the Tories, for example, focuses on the issue of poor judgment, without a hint of the irony of using poor judgment in trying to make their case.

Perhaps parties could instead promote their female-friendly policies (an inexpensive route, since it would only take a 15-second ad), find more women to place before voters, and give women more responsibilities in governing.

The only other way we can think of involves running Channing Tatum as a candidate. And outlawing shirts.


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Gord Woodward

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