Thursday, February 28, 2008

Federal Budget Thoughts

So budget day just happens to have come at a really busy time for me, but I thought quickly I’d let my thoughts be known.

I have mixed reaction really. On the hand, I was confident that if we went to the polls over the budget we would win and I was looking forward to that campaign, so I’m a bit disappointed it doesn’t look it’s going to happen.

On the other hand, I agree with people like Dan Arnold (Calgary Grit) and others that this probably wouldn’t have been the best thing to run an election against. The budget is not great but it’s not nearly as terrible as the last two and does have some initiatives that the Liberals have advocated for in it (but it was certainly lacking in many areas and it's clear these guys have recklessly squandered the surplus the Liberals left them). So there are pros to picking another issue to go on.

I hope Dion leaves the option open of bringing down the government on a non-confidence motion later this session before Parliament rises for the summer (maybe over the government’s refusal to bring back the Clean Air Act or something). Maybe he could get all of caucus behind him then with Rae and Martha in the House.

I understand that many people think Dion should have over-ruled those in his caucus and election team that wanted to wait but if the people running the campaign (like David Smith) are certain that it is wiser to wait then you have to give their opinion some weight too. They want to go when they are certain they will win and while you may disagree with that view and may think things won’t get better by waiting but if the guys running things are really certain in their convictions that the Liberals will win for sure if they wait then you can’t fault them for digging in their heels. Ultimately, if the Liberals don’t win (or at least increase their seat count) in the next election you could argue the whole exercise was a waste (as we just end up in the same place) so you want to be confident going in. But as I said I think we would have won had we gone now.

So I understand the disappointment others feel, but we can’t lose sight of the bigger picture. Everyone who was looking forward to the campaign still I’m sure would like Harper gone tomorrow. Well no matter what your misgivings over the Liberal reaction to the budget remember we still have a leader who would be 100 times better Prime Minister than we have now and if we want to see Harper gone I don’t think taking your ball and going home is the answer, as Harper will only benefit. You won’t always agree with what the Liberal Party does but if you were ready to go to bat for them over this budget I hope you can look at the bigger picture once the campaign does finally come (everyone is entitled to vent though of course). We need a better Prime Minister and a better Canada and I still just as strongly believe that the Liberal Party will give us that.

So a part of me is disappointed, but I haven’t lost confidence then when we do on the campaign trail we will have the platform and the vision that will win us the next election.

Back to the books…

Recommend this Post