March 22, 2011 –
Bowmanville – The Liberal Party cannot and will not support this budget. No MP elected to stand up for Canadian families and seniors can support a budget that is so out of touch with the priorities of all Canadians. The Conservatives clearly made the wrong choices. This budget just “stays the course” on the core priorities of the government. The Conservatives obviously care more about $6 billon in tax breaks for large corporations; $30-billion untendered stealth jet fighters and $13 billion for U.S.-style mega-prisons.
This budget does virtually nothing to strengthen public pensions. It ignores child care and early learning for our kids. It does little for family caregivers and post-secondary students and ignores Canada’s capacity to secure the future of public health care.
Any MP who cares about preserving the integrity of Parliament and Canadian democracy must vote against this budget. Liberals cannot support a government that deceives Canadians about their spending plans, breaks the rules, and attacks our democracy.
We need to bring honesty and respect back to Ottawa. Mr. Harper now faces a contempt vote for hiding the truth of their spending plans from Canadians while his inner circle faces two RCMP investigations and charges of breaking election laws.
With this budget, the Conservatives are spending:
- 1,000 times more for fighter jets than for post-secondary students.
- 1,000 times more for prisons than youth crime prevention.
- More on the G20 in a single day than it will in a year for seniors.
- Three times as much on self-promoting advertising than for family care next year.
- Nothing on child care.
- Nothing on affordable housing.
- A hidden tax of $4,000 for every Canadian family to pay for their stealth F-35 jets.
A Liberal government will return corporate tax rates to 2010 levels and tackle the deficit while strengthening Canadian families with investments in:
- A real family care plan, with a six-month Family Care EI benefit, and a new refundable tax benefit for working families worth up to $1,350 per year, instead of no EI benefit and a paltry tax credit that does nothing for low-income caregivers and is only worth $300.
- Stronger public pensions, by strengthening the base Canada Pension Plan (CPP) with gradual increases to benefits over time and creating an option for topping-up savings with a new supplemental CPP, not just a modest GIS benefit that works out to only $1.20 per eligible senior a day.
- Support for learning and training, so that all Canadians who get the grades get the skills they need to get high-quality jobs, instead of a paltry $34 per student when two-thirds of parents think they won’t be able to save enough to help their kids go to college or university.
- Quality, affordable early learning and child care, to give our kids the head start they need by offering working families a real choice when they need to find child care spaces for their kids, not just $75 per year for art