Wednesday, February 13, 2008


John Ivison explains how Dion is going to have a hard time getting his mitts on the federal coffers even if the Liberals actually win the next election - Harper keeping Dion out of the money:

The problem for the Liberals is that Stephen Harper has devised a cunning plan that will stop the Grits getting their mitts on the cash. When the Liberal plan to re-direct the surplus toward program spending was put to the Prime Minister at a function on Monday, he responded with a grin: “I’ve already thought of that.”

Under the Tax Back Guarantee the Conservatives introduced last year, any unplanned surpluses automatically go to reduce the federal debt at the end of the fiscal year, with any savings in interest payments being re-allocated to tax relief. The Conservatives plan to make Mr. Dion’s spending plans part of their election campaign and have already run attack ads suggesting the Liberal leader is “not worth the risk” when it comes to reckless expenditure in a slowing economy.

- Forcing the Grits to be fiscally responsible, even if the present Government falls.

My admiration of Stephen Harper increases each day.

* * * *
Update: Dion's pledges thin on reality - Ivison. (Saturday Post)


Anonymous said...

When they realise that will they still have the drive to get 'back in to power'?
If they can't get their gready paws on our money the thrill will be nil.

rabbit said...

If Dion did become PM, this might indeed prevent him from funding his more expensive projects.

Or it could force the Liberals to run a deficit.

Or it could force the Liberals to increases taxes.

The last two options would provide no end of ammunition for the tories ("Tax and spend liberals!), but the conservatives have to stay out of debt themselves for full effect. That might be difficult if a recession comes along.

Presumably, however, plan A for Harper is to keep the Liberals out of power.

Gayle said...

I suppose he could just amend the legislation.

Möbius said...

I suppose he could just amend the legislation.

Quite right. The Ontario Liberals did that a couple of years ago, when they wanted to increase taxes, against legislation.

The new boys can always override the old boys.

Anonymous said...

Can't they just tax Alberta and the oil industry?

Anonymous said...

"The new boys can always override the old boys."

Rest assured that the old boy will daily remind the electorate during an election that the new boy wannabe wants to override to apply new taxes...But who am I kidding, this is Canaduh, the only way for politicians to get attention in this country is to slap a pair of skates and a hockey stick on them.

"Can't they just tax Alberta and the oil industry?"
I hope you are just kidding or being cynical Annon

Gayle said...

anon - the liberals do not have to raise taxes, they merely have to amend Harper's bill that dictates the entire surplus go to the federal debt.

And if Harper wants to campaign on the fact he cut programs, gave Quebec a huge whack of cash so they could have their own tax break and then commited the rest of the money so the liberals cannot fund programs that meet the needs of the rest of Canada, then go right ahead.

Perhaps while he is discussing fiscal responsibility he can finally let us know where the billions of dollars to pay for that tough on crime package are going to come from.