Sunday, May 4, 2014

Who really ‘pulled the plug’ in Ontario?

The Ontario Liberals are essentially promoting their May 1 budget as their election platform. They’ve been leaking parts of it over the last month like a government that rolls out spending promises before an election.

But how serious was Liberal leader Kathleen Wynne in working with the NDP to get this budget passed? In a minority government situation, it’s up to the ruling party to seek out support from the party that holds the balance of power.

But instead of consulting with the NDP over the budget as Wynne did last year, this year she unilaterally drafted the budget and sent NDP leader Andrea Horwath a letter that told her to either put up or shut up.

“Common sense” attack ad

Wynne also rolled out an unusual pre-budget attack ad against Horwath. In it, she used a Mike Harris “Common Sense Revolution” line:

The last time the NDP were in office, 1 out of 8 of us were on welfare. We just can’t afford to go back there.

Apparently Wynne believes that if the NDP were to form the government, people would quit their jobs in droves so they could take advantage of Ontario’s lavish welfare benefits.

That must be why welfare benefits have been seriously downsized during the Liberals’ 11-year reign, when accounted for inflation.

Real agenda

It’s pretty clear that instead of Wynne doing everything she could to ensure her budget would succeed, she did everything to make it fail.

She didn’t want to avoid an election. She was manufacturing one.

Her long-game election strategy is to appeal to left-leaning and centrist voters and muscle out the NDP to form a majority government. After all, the Liberals only fell short of a majority by one seat last election.

The real Wynne

This, of course, begs the question: who is the real Kathleen Wynne?

When she needed NDP support, she moved leftwards towards the center. Now she is rolling out a Red Book type platform with lots of goodies for the people.

But what happens if she wins a majority? Considering Ontario has a huge deficit which her spending promises will only make worse, she will have only one of two options:

  1. Reverse Dalton McGuinty’s corporate tax cuts and Harris’s income tax cuts for the wealthy to pay for her platform, governing from the center like David Peterson 25 years ago.

  2. Abandon her spending promises and tackle the deficit like the Chretien/Martin Liberals did when they came to power in 1993.


In 2011, McGuinty was utterly desperate to win another term of absolute power. So much so, he tried to buy a majority government using $1.1-billion of taxpayer money to shut down unpopular gas power plants he commissioned.

Wynne’s desire for unfettered power could be equally corrupt. She certainly wouldn’t be the first Liberal leader to campaign from the left in a bid to win all the power. Then govern from the right.


  1. You have your facts all wrong here. First of all, Premier Wynne wanted to meet with Ms. Horwath prior to the budget but Ms. Horwath and the NDP refused. The Premier did in fact meet with Mr. Hudak and they agreed to disagree. Since Ms. Horwath refused to meet with the Premier, the government had no choice but to deliver a budget on their own, which Ms. Horwath decided didn't suit what she wanted.

    As for your allegation about the $1.1 billion on the gas plants cancellations, the fact of the matter is that ALL parties happened to promise to CANCEL them. It just so happened that the Liberals were the ones to do it as they had the power. If the NDP or Tories got in, then they would have been stuck with that mess for cancelling them. My advice sir with all due respect, before commenting and accusing someone of something, make sure the facts support your point of view. In this case, the facts don't and never will.

    1. You say all parties wanted to waste $1.1B taxpayer dollars cancelling the gas plants, and you accuse me of having my facts wrong? That's rich. It's certainly not my allegation McGuinty cancelled the gas plants to win the ridings in Mississauga and weasel a majority government. It's every pundits' allegation who has written on the subject.

      And let's not forget that after the election, when McGuinty had missed a majority by one seat, he gave PC MP Elizabeth Witmer a plum patronage appointment to open up her seat for a by-election so he could win a majority. Thankfully voters rejected this morally-bankrupt ploy.

      Soon after the gas plant scandal was exposed, and McGuinty prorogued Parliament for an unprecedented 6 months so the Liberals could elect a new leader. More corruption.

      You are also mixed up on time lines. Hudak met with Wynne AFTER she put out her budget. Wynne wanted to consult with Horwath a week AFTER the budget was released, AFTER writing a letter to her telling her to put up or shut up. Wynne is the one who unilaterally drafted the budget cutting the NDP out of the process. The NDP certainly did not cut themselves out of the process.

      I provided links supporting my facts which you obviously didn't read, whoever you are.


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