Monday, January 07, 2008

Standing up to the bully on the block 

Does Saskatchewan's New Premier Brad Wall think we will be satisfied with a federal press release instead of a fair equalization formula? On the eve of his first federal-provincial first-ministers meeting, Wall seems to be preparing the ground for an argument that Saskatchewan doesn't either need or deserve the money:
"Equalization is for 'have-not' provinces and we're a 'have' province," said Wall. "That doesn't mean there's any less case for federal government investment and partnership in our province.
"We want to have a vision of remaining a 'have' province and then pressing hard and aggressively for a federal partnership in key areas to make sure the current boom lasts."
Yada, yada, yada. We're talking hundreds of millions of dollars here, Brad -- not just a few millions in grants for new bridges and hospital equipment that everybody else is going to get anyway. As Lorne Calvert says:
"It should not be a circumstance where even before the meeting you're saying, 'Well, I'm willing to back off that and look at some other issues like infrastructure,"' Calvert said.
"Yes, I'd be participating with every other premier in terms of federal involvement in infrastructure, federal involvement in dealing with industries in this country that are being hurt by the high Canadian dollar.
"But I would not be leaving at home the promise that Mr. Harper made to the people of Saskatchewan."
Doubtless the feds will be pressuring Wall very hard to drop the constitutional lawsuit -- they will be terrified to lose it.
In fact, I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if they turn the tables on Wall, trying to bully him by threatening to drag the lawsuit out for years and saying they won't give Saskatchewan one thin dime as long as the lawsuit is outstanding.
How Wall responds may well turn into Wall's first real challenge as a new premier.

Recommend this Post at Progressive Bloggers | 0 comments


Post a Comment

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Email me!