Elections Canada continues its crusade against the Conservative Party, over the horror that regional campaign offices were involved in national campaign activities, and that therefore their expenses should have been filed elsewhere. The case is quite convoluted and includes opposing interpretations of the law, but whichever side is deemed to be right I believe that it should be permissible for regional offices to participate in the national campaign. A strong national campaign benefits regional candidates and a national party is itself a collection of regional candidates.
So a regional office can't purchase time for an advertisement nationally? Are we forcing them to buy ads on the 6 o'clock news instead of Hockey Night in Canada? That national ad will likely be viewed by voters in their riding and help the local candidate win votes. I don't see the ethical violation in this matter. I also believe it should be permissible for local candidates to air commercials from the party. We shouldn't require local candidates to air only homemade commercials shot on their I-Phone.
Ironically enough I worked for Elections Canada for both of the 2006 and 2008 federal elections. The biggest problem we had in 2006 was the local Liberal candidate campaigning at polling stations on election day. I don't recall Elections Canada launching any criminal investigation for this violation of election law after that Liberal candidate won in 2006. This MP was later mired in an unrelated fraud investigation, was booted out of the Liberal Party, joined the Greens, and lost handily in 2008.
In the 2010 byelections, Liberals were again reported to be campaigning at polling stations. Elections Canada, can we please get an investigation into this serial violation of election law? Can you please raid the Liberals national party headquarters? You can call the CBC in advance and have them meet you there...