One word: bad. Bad, bad, bad. Ugh.
To begin I must set the stage. This is basically Duceppe's Debate. The English-language debates were focussed at the rest of Canada. It's Quebec (mainly) that focusses on the French-language debate. The Bloc, running only in Quebec, obviously must do well.
Lately Duceppe hasn't been doing well. He's been losing ground to Harper. The pollsters claim this is because federalists who would normally vote Bloc because they hate the Liberals now see Harper as a good alternative to the separatist Bloc.
When people start seeing Harper as a good alternative, I take it as a sign of the Apocalypse.
So that's the stage of the debate, Duceppe's Debate. Duceppe versus Harper. How did it go? Poorly for Duceppe. Which is bad for the Liberals, because it means it went well for Harper, which means he rises further in the polls, which means a stronger likelihood of a Conservative government.
Layton floundered. He tried to promote his party without sounding like a commercial, like last night, but ultimately didn't make much of an impression. His French was good though.
Martin was . . . well, Martin. Again he argued all over the place and was on the defensive from everyone. He has no clue how to lead this country.
Duceppe did okay. He didn't weaken his position. But he also didn't do anything new to sway those who might vote Conservative back into the Bloc's tender care. He kept on repeating stuff that he has focussed on throughout the campaign, when he should have been expanding his platform to attract those wayward federalists.
Harper, whose French still lacks preciseness, did better than I wanted him to. He didn't make any major mistakes that opened himself to attack, and he made a few points against the Liberals and Bloc. Unfortunately, from this debate it looks like Harper emerges as the one who leaves the best impression in a Canadian's mind.
Quebec is the last battleground. If the Bloc wins, I'm pretty confident of another Liberal minority. If the Conservatives get too many seats, it could bolster them to a Conservative minority. If they get a majority. . . . /me shudders.