Politics

Liberals issue talking points in confidential policy document

Liberal candidates running in the 2015 federal election have been issued their talking points in a 25-page document marked "confidential," but the document leaked to CBC News is missing key policy positions.

Key policy positions missing from pre-election 'reference tool' issued to candidates

Liberal candidates running in the 2015 federal election have received their talking points in a 25-page document marked 'confidential,' but it's short on details. (Sean Kilpatrick/Canadian Press)

Liberal candidates running in the 2015 federal election have been issued their talking points in a 25-page document marked "confidential" that has been leaked to CBC News.

Although Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau continues to come under fire for a perceived lack of details on policy, the party tells candidates the guide is not an election document. 

"It is not a campaign platform but rather an internal reference tool intended to provide reactive messaging to respond to questions on the ground."

The guide titled What We Stand For outlines the party's position on a range of issues from economic policy to foreign affairs and defence.

Candidates are told to use the talking points if they need to comment on party policy or prep for interviews, but the document is short on details and missing key party positions.

For instance, while candidates are reminded that "current and Liberal MPs are committed to vote in support of a woman's right to choose," the document does not say what position the party will take on prostitution or euthanasia.

Missing from the document is any mention of the party's position on the Canadian military mission against ISIS in Iraq or the party's position on marijuana.

At the bottom of each page is the date 08-12-2014 — "the date the content was last updated." 

Candidates are assured "this document is ongoing and will be continually updated" as the election nears.

"As new policy positions become available, if current positions require updating, or if we receive the same questions from candidates regarding the messaging."

The party suggests candidates keep the document in a "three-ring binder" and store it in a "safe" place. 

Candidates who "inadvertently misplace" their binders are asked to email the party "as soon as possible."

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