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2000 leaders’ debate

The Story

For the second night in a row, Prime Minister Jean Chrétien absorbs a verbal barrage from the four challengers for his office. Progressive Conservative Leader Joe Clark and Canadian Alliance neophyte Stockwell Day supply much of the fireworks in this heated encounter, while New Democrat Alexa McDonough and Bloc Québécois Leader Gilles Duceppe join in the attack. "You're a prime minister without a plan, except to stay in office," accuses Clark, one of many accusations flung at Chrétien in an intense debate.

Medium: Television
Program: CBC Television News Special
Broadcast Date: Nov. 9, 2000
Guest(s): Jean Chrétien, Joe Clark, Stockwell Day, Gilles Duceppe, Alexa McDonough
Moderator: Ann Medina
Panellist: Jason Moscovitz, Craig Oliver, David Vienneau
Duration: 1:59:24
This clip has poor audio.

Did You know?

• This debate marked the second tough night in a row for Prime Minister Jean Chrétien, who faced abundant criticism in the French-language debate the night before.


• Canadian Alliance Leader Stockwell Day's "No 2-tier healthcare" sign was not only an illegal prop for such debates, it also became an instant object of scorn. Tory leader Joe Clark remarked that Day appeared to be "running for office as some sort of game-show host" and Alliance strategists apologized after the debate.


• Day had served as Canadian Alliance Leader for less than two months before this debate occurred, making this debate his pivotal introduction to Canadians. While acknowledging he got in some good shots against Chrétien, both the Toronto Star and The Globe and Mail concluded Day was "the big loser" of the encounter.


• The biggest losers on election night were the New Democrats [13] and Progressive Conservatives, [12] both of which lost several seats and finished fourth and fifth, respectively. Jean Chrétien's Liberals won a third straight majority with 172 seats and the Canadian Alliance formed the Official Opposition with 66 seats. The Bloc Quebecois won 38 seats.




Leaders' Debates 1968-2011: Arguing for Canada more