Jason Kenney has long been Stephen Harper's secret political weapon.
When Kenney was the prime minister's parliamentary secretary and later as citizenship and immigration minister, he relentlessly wooed new Canadians into the Conservative tent.
Kenney has probably eaten more Asian dinners outside of Ottawa than the rest of the Harper's cabinet put together.
And he's continuing this tradition as the minister of employment, social development, and multiculturalism.
You can see in the photos above that it was Kenney, and not Harper, who met the Dalai Lama during his trip to Canada.
It will help the Conservatives among some expat Tibetans as well as with apolitical types who admire the Dalai Lama's Buddhist worldview.
Kenney's action stands in contrast to the mayor of Vancouver, Gregor Robertson, who didn't have an audience with His Holiness during the Tibetan leader's visit to Vancouver this week.
Robertson's failure to meet the Buddhist spiritual leader hasn't gone unnoticed during the election campaign.
"He should have met the Dalai Lama today," NPA mayoral candidate Kirk LaPointe stated bluntly during an October 22 debate at Langara College.
Robertson's middle name is Bethune in honour of his relative Dr. Norman Bethune—a Canadian physician who is a national hero in China for providing medical support to the Communists during the civil war.
The Chinese government views the Dalai Lama as an anti-Chinese renegade as it retains iron-fisted control over Tibet.
When U.S. president Barack Obama met the Tibetan leader earlier this year, the Chinese government called it a "gross interference in China's politics".
Later, the Norwegian government came under criticism for avoiding the Dalai Lama when he visited Oslo.
The Conservatives adopted a middle path by having a senior cabinet minister meet with him.
Former premier Gordon Campbell also met the Dalai Lama when he last visited B.C.
Vision Vancouver's leader, on the other hand, kept his distance.
So did Premier Christy Clark.