Author: Ryan

The Ontario NDP’s Leadership Race

The Ontario NDP’s Leadership Race

Will John Tory’s ‘prudent’ leadership be tough enough to tackle Toronto’s big issues if he’s re-elected?

Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath speaks to the media after a news conference in Toronto on June 6, 2017. (Chris Young/The Canadian Press file photo)

The current Ontario NDP leadership race is about who is going to be there when we need change, or whose ideas will be too scary when we really need them.

John Tory’s run for the leadership has been a little bit of both.

There’s his general “stop selling oil and gas” message at the top of the ticket, which has resonated with the Ontario voters that gave him his riding by 12,000 votes.

There’s a more specific message on how we can end the “predatory” sale of affordable housing to first-time buyers – which should get his support.

And then there’s the big issues to be tackled by the people of Toronto: stop the privatization of our water and water infrastructure, save our transit and get the lights back on.

And then there’s a “we’re going to build that for you if you’re not going to pay for it,” which has sparked a debate about how to pay the bills (the taxes) or the taxes on the bills (the social programs).

There’s little room for debate about Tory’s plan, which he laid out in his leadership speech on June 12.

In sum, Tory is looking to replace the old “finance minister” and “energy minister” role with two separate finance and energy ministers (John Horgan and Mitzie Hunter).

He will make the controversial decision to cancel a $600 million retroactive tax credit for low-income homes, and will remove the province’s cap on corporate and income-tax rates from 2023 to match federal rates.

He will also remove the cap on housing taxes and reverse the $2 billion tax credit for “energy efficiency” that has been in place in Ontario for two decades.

And a big part of why he’s done this is because he’s not able to get the legislature to vote for his plan.


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