By: Greg Staley
Written on: 2021-08-17
Screen shot taken from CPAC coverage.
Many conservatives were quick to criticize Trudeau’s decisions to give a one-time, $500 payment to seniors right before an election calling it an attempt at “vote-buying.” It could be argued that Erin O’Toole, leader of the Conservative party is no better as he laid out plans in today’s press conference to get rid of the GST for the month of December if elected Prime Minister.
Mr. O’Toole told reporters that “It’s getting harder to make ends meet in Canada.” He explained that “after all the suffering Canadians have experienced over the last 18 months, families are now being hit hard by higher prices.” The Conservative party leader said that “It’s getting harder and harder to afford the basics,” all without informing the listener as to why things are getting more expensive (debt has a big role). He then said, “as beautiful as the summer is it won’t be long until Canadians are looking to the holiday season to spend the time with their families – hopefully in person this year.” Yes, Erin O’Toole “hopes” you can visit your family in person this year for Christmas.
Then the full sales pitch came down from the CPC leader as he told Canadians “December is the time of year where Canadian families hope to have a bit more time to spend, a bit more time and money to buy presents for the family. It’s a time that’s gonna be harder than ever for many families this year. Families where someone has lost a loved one or lost a job or have gone back to a job that doesn’t pay as much and higher prices are gonna make it even harder.” Erin’s solution to these high prices that result from supply chain disruptions and out-of-control government spending? A GST-free December! “That’s why Canada’s recovery plan will lower prices for families while supporting Canadian bricks and mortars retailers who have been hit hard by the recession. As Prime Minister, I will implement a month-long GST holiday this December. All purchases will be tax-free for a month. This will put 1.5 billion dollars back into Canadians pockets.” Put in other words, this will take at least $1.5 billion out of the government’s coffers – driving the debt up further.
The Conservative Party leader feels it is justified and necessary though to “secure the future.” “You won’t have to fill out any lengthy forms or applications to get this tax break,” he told reporters. “Your 5% discount will show up at the till at your favourite retailer. It’s time to give families a break and it’s time to help small retailers to get back on their feet.”
This is the Conservative equivalent of vote-buying. It’s just a slightly different pitch so that it is palatable to the Conservative base – It’s about the business owners and families after all. Call a spade a spade – this is vote-buying.
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