1. Economic mismanagement of the recession
According to the 22 mayors, Harper is flat-out lying when he says that stimulus money is getting to the designated projects. The mayors say the government is dragging its feet so egregiously that they won't be able to spend the money till next summer.
Stimulus money has to be spent now. Spent now, it will give the economy a boost and help us out of the recession. Spent next summer, it could add to inflation. Not acting responsibly is going to cost us big-time down the road. We can't continue with the neo-con ideology-based negligence of Harper/Flaherty.
For God's sake... Under Harper, Ontario has turned into a have-not province! That wasn't an accident. He has never hidden his disdain for Ontario; at the start he seemed to delight in slighting us.
Now more than ever we need responsible economic leadership, and in Canada that means Liberal. (As I have said many times, the Liberals are never able to adequately balance economic responsibility and social progressiveness, but they're the only party even trying.)
2. Lack of help for the unemployed
Half of unemployed Canadians are ineligible for EI. (If I were unemployed I would be ineligible, even though I contribute and have worked the requisite hours.) There are gross inequities across the country in how many hours you need to have worked to get EI, and in how many weeks you can collect it.
This isn't something to start talking about; this is something we need to fix fast - or at least put in temporary measures. EI is anathema to Harper, who calls Canada a "social welfare state in the worst sense of the word" and thinks the unemployed are lazy and criminal. Meanwhile we have a human crisis unfolding all around us... and that hardship is going to further drag down the economy and cost us in the long run.
3. Counter the hate
The Conservatives are spending $750,000 per week to run negative ads attacking the character of Michael Ignatieff. So far their ads are having no effect, but eventually that kind of money and that kind of character-based assault will start to take effect. We let Harper's US-style neo-con politics of hate destroy one Liberal leader; we don't have to pretend that they're playing by gentleman's rules. Let's get mad and take them down.
4. The polls show that Canadians want a change
Canadians - especially the over 50% of Canadians living in Ontario and Quebec - no longer support Stephen Harper. They're fed up and they want a change. A summer election would be a tough fight but it's the right thing to do.
5. An election will provide a good jolt of stimulus
People complain that elections are expensive, but what we need right now is a good jolt of money into the pockets of the unemployed, underemployed, and people living on fixed incomes who are hurting from the stock market crash. An election would be excellent stimulus, providing tens of thousands of part-time jobs.