This week the Finance Minister provided Canadians with his Economic “Snapshot” and revealed that we now have the largest deficit in Canadian history at $343 billion. This is tens of billions of dollars worse than even the worst-case scenarios suggested by the media or even the Parliamentary Budget Officer. This government has made history again in all the wrong ways by pushing the Federal debt to over $1 trillion.
While it is rightfully pointed out that during a pandemic spending will increase, Prime Minister Trudeau had already added $87 billion in deficits before this crisis hit. This out of control spending came after the Conservatives brought Canada out of deficit spending from the Great Recession of 2008.
Prime Minister Trudeau’s negligent response to COVID-19 has only added to an already growing debt.
His Government failed to secure our borders to prevent the spread of COVID. They failed to secure vital medical supplies for our front-line workers. And they even failed to implement proper airport screening for passengers arriving from hotspots.
The introduction of CERB prior to the wage subsidy made it hard for businesses to keep their employees on their payroll.
Despite repeated suggestions by the Conservatives to implement the Back to Work Bonus, Trudeau still has not changed the CERB to help people to return to work. The current version of CERB punishes people for making over $1000 in a month, meaning many people actually lose money if they return to work at less than full-time.
And in perhaps his most shocking move, Trudeau increased the carbon tax in the middle of a global pandemic while Canadians were struggling to make ends meet.
These mistakes, along with the introduction of a convoluted rental assistance program and difficult to access small business loan program has resulted in businesses closing and thousands of Canadians losing their jobs. We’ve also seen government revenues fall adding to an already growing deficit.
Trudeau’s failure to properly respond to this pandemic has only worsened the already poor financial record of this Liberal government and further damaged Canada’s economy. Under Trudeau, Canada now has the highest unemployment rate in the G7 and has seen its first credit downgrade since the 1990’s.
And while Trudeau has claimed that the Government “took on debt so Canadians wouldn't have to", the truth is that government spending is always paid for by the taxpayers and Canadians will be paying for this for generations.
Conservatives know that to be competitive, we need to unleash the power of the private sector. It is time to help Canadians get back to work, to implement the Back to Work bonus, to support small businesses, lower taxes, cut red tape and make Canada an attractive place to do business once again.
Be assured, our Conservative caucus will continue to fight to get Canadians the help they need, and we will continue to call on the Trudeau government to put forward a transparent plan to guide Canada’s recovery. Canadians deserve no less.
I hope this has been of interest to you.
Kelly Block, MP