NDP, Liberals promise more spending, while Tories promise spending cuts

Making life more affordable for Canadians a focus in the 2019 election

The three main political parties continued promising to make life more affordable for Canadians on Wednesday, by promising to create new programs, boosting support for ones already there or finding ways to cut spending to pay for tax cuts.

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh was first out of the gate in Sudbury, Ont., Wednesday morning, with a promise to extend full public dental coverage to those whose household incomes are less than $70,000 year — billed as a move toward eventually including dentistry in universal public health care.

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau then said in Fredericton that if re-elected, his government would increase old age security by an extra 10 per cent once seniors reach age 75, as well as boost the Canada Pension Plan survivor’s benefit by 25 per cent.

Then Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer announced in Hamilton that he would review all federal business subsidies and get rid of programs where the money benefits shareholders, corporate executives, foreign companies and lobbyists or consultants — rather than protecting jobs.

The Conservatives say this would save the federal government $1.5 billion a year.

ALSO READ: Federal leader candidates talk housing, children and privacy

The promises came as the federal election campaign marks a milestone today: one week down, four-and-a-half to go.

The first week has seen Trudeau criss-cross the country. He launched his campaign in Vancouver, and continued with swings through Quebec, Ontario and the Atlantic provinces. He has appearances scheduled today in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia.

Marquee promises he’s already made include a massive expansion of child-care and parental-benefit programs, an increase in the value of homes eligible for the first-time home-buyer incentive and a package of smaller measures to help new businesses get momentum.

Trudeau’s campaign hit a snag early on when his media bus ran into his plane, and he was also knocked a bit offside when the SNC-Lavalin affair re-emerged in the headlines with word the RCMP investigation — now paused for the campaign — was being stymied by the protection of cabinet confidences.

ALSO READ: Rick Mercer calls out Conservative candidate in B.C. for fake meme

Scheer has also travelled extensively, focusing his energies on getting to know voters and announcing a range of tax credits targeted at families. He’s also been forced to dodge dirt flung at his campaign by the Liberals, who spent the early days of the campaign challenging him on controversial statements made by both him and his candidates.

Scheer is campaigning in and around Toronto today.

Singh has focused his campaign in Ontario and in Quebec, where he launched a platform directly aimed at reigniting the passion for his party in that province. He’s had his share of candidate troubles as well, including finding enough of them to run under the orange banner, a problem the party says will be solved by the Sept. 30 deadline for candidates to register.

Singh is spending a second day straight in Ontario, moving on to Barrie and Toronto after his announcement in Sudbury.

The Green party has released its national platform, a document that leader Elizabeth May says seeks to show that all national policy must now be considered as a means to respond to the current climate emergency.

While May spent the early days of the campaign mostly in her home province of B.C., where she holds her seat, she moved squarely onto the offence after that by hitting ridings the party thinks it might be able to win, including Guelph.

May is back in Vancouver today, though.

And People’s Party of Canada Leader Maxime Bernier saw new life given to his campaign with word that he’ll have a spot at the officially sanctioned leaders’ debates scheduled for early October.

The nod from the debates’ commission validates his argument that his party — though polling at only four per cent nationally — does have a chance of electing an MP.

Bernier is in New Brunswick today, for the latest in a series of relatively low-key meet-and-greets with local candidates.

Despite all the leaders’ moving around the country, the polls aren’t moving that much. New data released today by Leger shows the Liberals and Conservatives are still neck-and-neck for the lead, and the NDP and Greens fighting for third place.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Victoria council looks to address systematic racism

Motion put forward calling on police to end street checks

West Shore RCMP responds after reports of man masturbating on bus

52-year-old man charged with committing an indecent act in a public place

Police respond to successful Facebook scam on Oak Bay resident

Petty thievery in King George Terrace where plants, gargoyle are missing

Baby raccoon rescued from 10-foot deep Saanich drainage pipe

‘Its cries were loud, pitiful and heartbreaking,’ Saanich animal control officer says

Rare comet dazzles night sky over Saanich Peninsula

Comet NEOWISE is passing Earth for the first time in 7,000 years

B.C. records 62 new COVID-19 cases, two deaths since Friday

Province has just over 200 active cases

Canadians torn on scaling back COVID-19 benefits to save money: poll

Of those surveyed, 78 per cent said they were worried about the size of the deficit

Port Alberni will have a salmon derby on Labour Day after all

Alberni Valley Tyee Club reveals ‘socially distanced’ derby only for Labour Day 2020

‘Trauma equals addiction’: Why some seek solace in illicit drugs

Part 2: Many pushed into addiction by ‘toxic stress,’ says White Rock psychologist

Hotel rooms for B.C. homeless too hasty, NDP government told

Businesses forced out, but crime goes down, minister says

Suspicious fire quenched before reaching gunpowder in Nanaimo’s historic Bastion

Probe underway in basement blaze that erupted near where powder stored to fire signature cannons

Duncan model makes quarter finals in ‘Maxim’ magazine contest

Brandee Peart among top one per cent left in competition

Wage subsidy will be extended until December amid post-COVID reopening: Trudeau

Trudeau said the extension will ‘give greater certainty and support to businesses’

B.C. government prepares for COVID-19 economic recovery efforts

New measures after July consultation, Carole James says

Most Read