Lynton Crosby’s partner ramps up efforts to distance firm from Harper campaign

The partner of the Australian wedge strategist brought in last month to salvage Stephen Harper’s faltering re-election bid, who earlier tweeted that Lynton Crosby is no longer in Canada, is ramping up efforts to distance their firm from the Conservative campaign going as far as to demand a retraction from a radio host who discussed the controversy on air.

“We are not involved, not there and definitely not part of this nonsense,” Textor tweeted at ABC’s Radio National Breakfast host Fran Kelly. “Retract.”

Kelly was discussing with her guest Duane Bratt, Chair and Professor in the Department of Policy Studies at the Mount Royal University, whether Harper would be able to eke out a victory using Crosby’s strategies.

“He’s a very murky character in Canadian politics,” Prof. Bratt said. “They believe that just after he was named on to the Conservative staff, the issue of the niqab came up. It was seen as the Conservatives creating a wedge issue between them and the NDP especially in the province of Quebec.”

“They seem to suggest that Crosby’s fingerprints are all over that niqab issue and some of the more, I wouldn’t say anti-immigrant, but clearly anti-Muslim attacks,” Prof. Bratt added.

Mark Textor has been on a social media offensive to distance his firm Crosby|Textor from the Conservative campaign under the hashtag #notincanada.

Some Canadians have appropriated the hashtag to express their relief over their fellow citizens not falling for racially charged dog whistle politics and wedge strategies employed by the Harper campaign.

Crosby has successfully used these tactics in Australia, New Zealand, and most recently during David Cameron’s re-election bid in as the British Prime Minister.

“Lynton Crosby and Prime Minister Harper underestimated the decency and humanity of Canadians,” user Sunnydays tweeted. “Goodbye to your failed racist and divisive tactics!”

Some others expressed anger at Crosby for inciting racial hatred in Canada.

“Crosby is #notincanada anymore,” Steven Nicholls tweeted. “But he was here and we’re worse off for it! Way to fuel racism, jerks!”

Others, however, are urging Canadians not to let their guards down.

“The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world that he doesn’t exist,” a user commented anonymously quoting a line from the film Usual Suspects. “Harper and Crosby might be trying to lull us all into a false sense of security. Be vigilant, Canada, this could be a trick.”