With just three days to go before all good Canadians go off to the polls to choose who will helm the country for the next little while, it's time to weigh in on the past couple of months of campaigning and who is the best candidate, both locally and federally.
This has been a particularly difficult campaign to watch, and as editor of a newspaper, to cover.
This election was born out of scandal, political posturing and a vote of no confidence, so from its first steps, the election was mired in controversy and mudslinging. It seemed to get worse from there.
To begin with, most Canadians didn't seem to want an election call over the holidays, so it already seemed like it was going to be a pain and hassle. But as the fur began to fly during daily news bites, press conferences and policy statements, most of us regretted the decision even more.
The thing that has proved to be the most annoying about the election, and to some degree most elections, was the tremendous amount of muck-raking and mudslinging which took place in the first half of the campaign and continued pretty much through until the end.
While it is permissible to state how your platform or party differs from the other parties or platforms, it is, at least to me, a little uncouth to spend half your time badmouthing your opponent to make yourself look better.
Watching all the TV ads, I found myself more outraged by the nature of the announcements themselves than the supposedly scandalous content they reported.
Both the Liberals and Conservatives took so many cheap shots at each other over the course of the past two months, that I wondered if it was a schoolyard brawl or election coverage I was watching. Who wants name-callers for leaders?
Daily, I received emails from every party telling me about things the candidates said the day before, the week before, and sometimes what they said many years ago. The rhetoric has been flying so fast and furious it is no wonder many people I talk to are still undecided.
So who do you vote for on Jan. 23?
Despite the title of this editorial, I can't, or rather won't, try to persuade you one way or the other. I'm still undecided, too.
In the end, I can only suggest you try to look beyond the political games, misdirection, complicated and convoluted promises and look at what you want from a government.
The parties all have pretty different platforms, when you boil it all down.
So take a look online, or in the pages of this week's Chief, and think hard about the kind of Canada you want for yourself and your children.
But most importantly, on Monday go out there and cast your vote.
It is the only way your voice will be heard above the election din.