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What was that line Flaherty used in his budget speech?

Ah yes – “the long, tiring, unproductive era of bickering between the provincial and federal governments is over,”.

Well.. if this report is any indication, he’s about to get more, not less bickering:

All four Atlantic Canadian provinces will lose money under the federal Conservatives’ new equalization formula, a new study shows…the APEC study finds that the new formula will also mean less money for New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island.Memorial University economics professor Wade Locke, a co-author of the report, said Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador are already aware they will each lose about $1.4 billion by 2020. Locke predicts that New Brunswick will lose about $1 billion over the same period, while P.E.I. would receive almost $200 million less.

You have 2 Atlantic provinces governed by Conservatives that are complaining bitterly; it’s not a stretch to say that the 2 recently elected Liberal premiers will likely join in the fray now, and of course we have the Saskatchewan threatened lawsuit, which has left Deceivin’ Stephen actually uttering a rare moment of truth and clarity when he said “I don’t even understand what they’re saying anymore,”.

I wonder if Flaherty really believed what he was saying when he said that now infamous line in his Budget speech. Harper still has not held a First Ministers meeting with the provinces 18 months into his “new government” mandate. Besides the aforementioned Budget squabbles, you also have  several provinces objecting to Harper’s proposed piecemeal Senate “reform”. Relations between provinces and the feds were never this bad under any recent Prime Minister that I can think of – not Chretien or Martin, and not even Trudeau or Mulroney in the midst of their constitutional crises.

You’d almost think Harper and the Conservatives were doing this on purpose to try and prove that Canada is ungovernable. They’re doing a fine job of showing that right now, and most of it is of their own doing.

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7 comments to What was that line Flaherty used in his budget speech?

  • Here's some help:
    http://www.canada.com/topics/news/national/story.html?id=a22d25c8-3077-4e64-a05a-c288d239b37f&k=33600

    So, Scott, where do you stand on the issue? Do you agree with McGuinty or Williams/MacDonald?

  • You've got some chutzpah accusing others of being "partisan shills" when you're one of the worst schills of the Blogging Tory lot,  Aaron.  I don't particularly care what you think of my postings.. and I don't particularly care what you call me either.

    The point being made was that the Tories were bragging about how Federal-Provincial relations were going to be one happy lovey-dovey bunch from now on… and instead its turned into one of the most rancorous periods between Federal-Provincial relations in recent Canadian history.

  • It's exactly the point if Scott wants to be anything other than a partisan shrill. Not surprisingly, he has yet to answer the question.

  • slg

    The point isn't whether they should or shouldn't – the point is Harper promised them when campaiging – it's in his literature (Danny Williams has copies of that) and via letters.

    Now – maybe Ontario will get into the act.  Harper's lies may cost Ontario millions of dollars.

  • Okay, Scott, which position do you agree with? Do you really believe that these provinces should continue to collect the same amount of equalization money from the rest of the country despite increasing revenues? Doesn't that kind of mess up the whole point (not to mention the spirit) of the equalization program?

  • The real Tory mistake was promising to keep the Atlantic Accord intact in the first place.

    Side deals ruin the whole purpose of federalism in the first place.

    While assymetrical federalism is sometimes a necessity, it goes wrong immediately when one province is being treated differently to the benefit or the detriment of the others.

  • foottothefire

    Life sucks when your a Harpertory:  Can't get a good brag in that doesn't turn into a bag of crap blowing up in your face.

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