Investment plan

Canada’s Liberals unveil massive investment plan ahead of vote

The ruling Liberal Party in Canada has pledged billions of dollars in new investment weeks before the federal election, as the party seeks support amid a tight race and recent gains from rival Tories.

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau unveiled the party’s election platform at a press conference in Toronto on Wednesday, pledging $ 62 billion (C $ 78 billion) in new spending over five years, with a focus on Healthcare.

The investments would be partially offset by more than 25 billion Canadian dollars (19.8 billion dollars) of new income, mainly from a higher tax on the profits of banks and insurers and the fight against tax evasion. , said the party.

“We have a plan to move forward for everyone on health, housing, child care, climate,” Trudeau said during Tuesday’s unveiling of the plan, titled Forward For Everyone.

The new investments – which will be spread over five years, from 2021 to 2016 – are in addition to the C $ 101 billion ($ 81 billion) in additional spending over three years voted in a budget earlier this year.

Justin Trudeau gives the Metro Toronto Convention Center a thumbs up during his campaign tour in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, September 1, 2021 [Carlos Osorio/Reuters]

The Liberals have spent a lot of money on programs to protect citizens and businesses from the COVID-19 pandemic, driving national debt and budget deficits to record highs. Trudeau dodged repeated questions about when the budget could be balanced.

“I think it’s important to be financially responsible. I think it’s important to live within our means, ”he said. “I think it’s also important to make the right investments so that future generations can prosper.”

Trudeau on August 15 called a snap election two years ahead of schedule in an attempt to return the Liberals to a majority government, after the party was relegated to a 157-seat minority government in the last vote in 2019.

But a recent poll shows a close race ahead of the Sept. 20 vote, with the Conservative Party of Canada led by Erin O’Toole holding 33.8% support, compared with 31.2% for the Liberals, according to CBC’s Poll Tracker, which publicly aggregates election survey data.

Trudeau faced angry protests during the election campaign and was forced to cancel an event in the province of Ontario last Friday for security reasons after crowds of anti-vaccine protesters arrived and anti-masking.

Angry protesters also gathered at a second Trudeau campaign event in Ontario over the weekend, “shouting obscenities, uttering death threats against the Prime Minister and hurling racist and misogynistic slurs against people. of color and women in its protective details, ”CBC News reported.

Conservative Party Leader Erin O’Toole also presented a big spending platform [Christinne Muschi/Reuters]

Kyle Seeback, a Conservative Party candidate, said some of his supporters had attended the protests and were “no longer welcome” to his campaign.

Conservatives attacked the Liberal election platform on Tuesday, with O’Toole chief strategy officer Dan Robertson saying on Twitter that it was “more borrowing, more debt, more debt. ‘taxes and more prices’.

O’Toole also offered a big spending platform, but said on Tuesday he would balance the budget 10 years from now “without cuts” and only by increasing revenues through stronger economic growth. The Conservative Party has not yet detailed the costs of its platform.

“If he doesn’t show the numbers, why should Canadians believe him? Trudeau spoke of O’Toole’s promise to balance the budget.

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