Saturday, January 07, 2006

Harper: "Read my lips -- more new taxes!" 

Martin knew if he waited long enough, Harper wouldn't be able to stop himself -- he just has to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory:
Late last year, Conservative Leader Stephen Harper's staff told CBC Online the Conservatives would let the [Liberal] tax cuts stand if they win the election. But the Conservatives called CBC this week to say that while they would allow the Liberal tax cut to stand for last year . . . they intend to immediately raise personal income taxes if they are elected later this month. The Conservatives say a Stephen Harper government would raise the rate on the lowest tax bracket back from 15 per cent back to 16 per cent in their first budget, probably in April. As well, the basic exemption, income on which no tax is charged, would be dropped by $400 in the same budget. A Tory official acknowledged to CBC News that would likely mean taking back the money taxpayers are saving on their paycheques for the first four months of this year.
Oh, and here's the kicker:
The Tories refused to be interviewed on camera for the story.
Emphasis mine.
And if the Conservatives would backtrack on this promise, what about all the other Liberal/NDP spending programs of the last 18 months, for cities and infrastructure and Aboriginals and health care? Harper said at the time that he wouldn't pull the rug out from under these programs if he was elected (which, I must say, I did not believe at the time). But is he now going to change these promises retroactively?

So now Harper can play defense for a while.
And I note that even the press is now getting a little tired of seeing the RCMP apparently running against Martin -- the latest story is that the RCMP is now going around interviewing people on whether a portion of a $4 million grant given by Heritage Canada to a federalist group during the 1995 referundum campaign was properly accounted for, an issue which then-minister Sheila Copps told CBC had been looked at by the Auditor General ten years ago.
So, OK -- everybody into the pool!
Should we also see if we can't get the RCMP to re-open an investigation into Mulroney and Airbus or whatever that crock was all about? And why stop there? Lets rehash the NDP's Spudco scandal in Saskatchewan that cost us $34 million. . .

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