As I and others have noted on numerous occasions, the PCPO's Tim Hudak is running an election campaign rather short on specific commitments. Furthermore, in one high-profile instance where he has made a concrete proposal--to maintain the McGuinty health-care premium and (if I am remembering this bit correctly) redirect funds raised by it to front-line services--Hudak reversed himself in less than a week. Not good politics, I'm afraid.
And, I have discovered, this is not the only flip-flop Mr. Hudak has executed in the past several weeks.
Specifically: one of the other bits of policy that PCPO have floated recently is for the initiation of a "mandatory Sunset Review Process". As Hudak said back in November:
Folks, I think you’ll agree with me that the private sector simply cannot afford to support a
bloated public sector any longer. To help reign in spending and get government focused on the basics families need most, I am calling for a mandatory Sunset Review process that forces
every government body to justify their existence and continued value to the public. And if they can’t – they go...
Hardly pulse-pounding stuff, nevertheless it iss something concrete that Mr. Hudak said he would do differently if elected to power here in Ontario.
However, there appears to be even less to this promise than was at first evident, for it appears that that Ontario's Separate School system will not be required to participate in the review process. This example of back-peddling seems to have been first noted in a letter to the Orangeville Banner:
Tim Hudak, leader of the Progressive Conservative Party, met with the Arthur and District Chamber of Commerce on Jan. 13.
Wellington County Catholic School Board trustee Jim Coffey asked about any possible changes to Catholic education. Mr. Hudak replied he “won’t muck around with Catholic education.”
Apparently his proposed “mandatory Sunset Review process that forces all ministries, agencies, boards and commissions to justify their existence and continued value to the public” won’t be mandatory after all.
Just to be clear, this is not a question of whether we support or are critical of the Ontario Catholic School system. In November, Hudak specifically stated that every government body would be asked to justify the money it gets from the province, and that the province would not take "no" for an answer. That's what "mandatory" means, after all. Now, it appears that some groups will be exempt from the process. So either Mr. Hudak spoke falsely in November, or he's changed his mind since then. If the latter...well, "flip flop" is the term you use in such circumstances.
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