How I would respond to the attack ads

A Liberal scripts an ad for Justin Trudeau

Lights up on Justin Trudeau, wearing a dress shirt open at the collar, a blazer, and blue jeans. He’s walking through a middle-class neighbourhood, somewhere in suburban Canada. He speaks directly into the camera as he walks.

TRUDEAU: It’s true, I was a teacher, and a whitewater rafting guide too.

He stops walking and pulls a BlackBerry out of his pocket. It’s playing footage of a moustachioed Justin Trudeau from the Tories’ new attack ads.

TRUDEAU: It’s true, I’ve grown a moustache for prostate cancer research.

The video on the BlackBerry screen switches to the slow-motion footage of his striptease.

TRUDEAU: And yes, I’ve even taken off my clothes to support the Canadian Liver Foundation.

He puts the BlackBerry back in his pocket.

TRUDEAU: But I’ll tell you what I haven’t done—and what I won’t do. I won’t lie to the Canadian people. I’ll challenge my opponents without taking their words out of context. Because the only way we’ll make this country stronger is with hope and hard work, not division and fear.

He starts walking again.

TRUDEAU: So let’s start right now. Mr. Harper thinks I was wrong to raise money for the Canadian Liver Foundation. I disagree. And if you visit, you’ll find a link to donate.

His father’s Mercedes convertible is parked at the curb. He gets behind the wheel.

TRUDEAU: Let’s do something positive for the nearly four million Canadians suffering from liver disease. And let’s demand the hopeful politics we deserve.

He drives off. Cut to footage of the Trudeau family—Justin, Sophie and the kids—waving from the stage at Sunday night’s leadership announcement.

VOICEOVER: A message from the Liberal Party of Canada.


OK, maybe not the thing with the car, but you get my point.

Tape it, release it online, get a news cycle’s worth of free media coverage, run it during a hockey game or two, and then announce the amount of money raised for liver research.

When that’s done, bring out the ominous music, the dark, grainy images, and the heavy artillery—and blast the Tories on their record for the next 30 months.

If that doesn’t work, see if Patrick Brazeau wants a rematch.

Adam Goldenberg is a former Liberal speechwriter and currently a contributor to CBC News: The National. Follow him at