Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Team Hudak Goes For Its Own Jugular

Stephen Harper Conservatives are pretending they had nothing to do with the controversial plan to blend the federal and provincial sales tax in Ontario, Tory MPP Bill Murdoch says.

"They can't divorce themselves away from this," Murdoch told Sun Media. "They're part of this whole scheme."

And they are too, though Hudak and co. have been trying to portray the GST/PST merger as soley the creation of Dalton McGuinty, so as to make it easier to oppose. Murdoch's intervention, however, insures that we will have a bit of Tory-on-Tory violence.

As to the Ontario HST itself, well, I'm not sure what I think of it yet. I believe the plan is to send out cheques to the tune of $300 a couple of times a year (the story says $1,000 but I don't think you get it all at once) so the whole thing works out to be revenue neutral, and most of the big business lobby groups are touting it as a boon to administrative efficiency. You wouldn't, however, think the province would get on board with something like this if they didn't come out ahead. So skepticism is the order of the day.


northwestern_lad said...

Personally, I hope that Hudak and his gang keep attacking the HST because he's already said that he won't repeal it. Nothing looks better on a new leader than to attack something as being so terrible and such and then admitting that you won't undo it if given the chance. Attacking Harper would be a nice cherry on the sundae.

bigcitylib said...

Did he actually say he wouldn't repeal it? D'you have a link?

buckets said...

From the province's stand-point it could be revenue neutral and still fiscally positive, since the entire provincial apparatus for collecting, administering, and policing the PST will be unnecessary.

northwestern_lad said...

I thought I had seen quotes to that effect somewhere, but I might be off (I am human after all). But he definently hasn't come out and said that he would undo it, like in these quotes:

"Killing the harmonized tax has become something of a personal crusade for Hudak. But when asked what he would do in government if the HST is adopted, as seems likely given McGuinty’s majority government, Hudak sidestepped the question, saying what’s important is to kill the tax before it starts."

"Hudak once again refused to say whether he would repeal tax harmonization if elected premier, instead arguing he hopes it won't ever come into effect."

Consistently the message seems to be "Oh golly geeze, I hate this tax and I really hope it never comes into effect.... but if it does, sorry, can't say what I'll do"

northwestern_lad said...

Sorry, that first link was

northwestern_lad said...

By contrast, ONDP Leader Andrea Horwath has promised to scrap it if elected Premier

"NDP Leader Andrea Horwath, who has promised to eliminate the tax if she becomes premier, suggested last week the HST could even be bad for Ontario's health."

Anonymous said...

You do realize that McGuinty freely admitted he was the one that initiated the discussions on HST right?

McGuinty said yesterday his government made the decision to proceed with a 13% harmonized federal and provincial sales tax.
"So we initiated it, I think that's fair to say, and we had a good productive conversation with the federal government that enabled us to move ahead." (ref)
Are the Tories a pert of this? Sure. Did they 'start' it? Nope.