Federal Leader: Stephen Harper
Parkdale-High Park: Jillian Sawezcko
Female Candidates: 18%
What’s mentioned on their website:
4. Health Care
5. Lower Taxes
6. Child Care
7. Tackling Crime
Interestingly, there’s a full page and a link under the “Leaders” category for Harper’s wife, Laureen, but there is no search function on the website. This makes things difficult.
Concerning the issues that are most important to me…
Harper recently, finally, committed to having Canadian troops out of Afghanistan by 2011. There’s nothing else about Afghanistan under the “Key Issues” section.
The Conservatives talk a lot about what they’ve done in the past, but there’s no mention of what they plan for the future, should Harper be re-elected. They have introduced what they claim to be a balanced and achievable plan to reduce Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions 20% by 2020 and cut air pollution in half by 2015 (aren‘t GHGs part of air pollution?). The want to offer a lot of incentives for people making green choices, and they want to fund green technologies, but they don’t say where that money is going to come from. There’s absolutely no mention of green tax shifting, or even of a carbon market… nothing about how the economy and the environmental policies can work successfully together. Which I find strange.
The Federal Budget…
I admit, I like that the GST has been reduced twice since Harper’s been in office. And that’s the main bit of bravado on their webpage dedicated to the economy of Canada. I have no qualms with the budget the Conservatives have laid out, except that they neglected to factor in the environment. It’s not mentioned once.
The Tories have sovereignty on the top of their list of “key issues”. TheY stress that a “four-pronged approach” is what’s needed. That’s pushing economic development (“unleashing“ the potential of our resource-rich north), national sovereignty (more protection), Northern input and control (ending the “paternalistic“ federal policies of past governments), and environmental protection (self-explanatory). These all sound like good things, but I’m wary of how much resource potential they see in the north, and how they‘d go about exploiting, I mean, “unleashing” it.