According to Battle River-Crowfoot MP Damien Kurek, the Canadian government is continuing to spend more while Canadians get less.
Kurek commented on the budget the day after the federal government tabled its 2022 budget; the first budget under the recently signed alliance between the NDP and Liberal Party of Canada which could see Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in power until 2025.
The agreement will see the federal NDP support the minority Liberals on key votes until 2025 in exchange for the Liberals moving on key NDP platform issues.
Further complicating the issue is the fact that the federal government presented the budget two days before the Parliament breaks for two weeks over Easter.
“Canadians, and their elected representatives, will not have a chance to question the government on the budget,” said Kurek.
As for the budget itself, Kurek calls it “uninspiring.”
“At a time when the world is demanding oil and gas … they expressly prohibit it,” said Kurek.
“It’s disappointing to say the least. It didn’t address challenges like health care. They make promises of future investment. Even where they talk tough, they don’t deliver.”
One example Kurek pointed out is military spending. According to Kurek, while the finance minister touted the need to increase spending in the military, the reality when looking at the budget document isn’t there.
“It’s incremental spending,” said Kurek.
“It’s incremental over time. It doesn’t address the purchase of the new F-35s. It doesn’t address the half a trillion already spent. Canada’s fiscal situation is an absolute mess.”
Kurek noted that housing was made a priority in the new budget, however the government is prioritizing it by “doubling down on failed programs” that have already caused home prices across the country to soar.
“It’s tough to find a bright spot on pretenses that are going to leave Canadians further behind,” said Kurek.
“This is the first Liberal-NDP budget. I’ll be interested to hear how this plays out across the country. People can count on me to make sure I bring their concerns to the House of Commons.”
The budget released by the federal government is planning for $56.6 billion in new spending by 2027, running a $52.8 billion deficit in 2022.
According to Kurek, this deficit comes at a time when the federal government is bringing in record revenues due to a booming economy and high value of oil and natural gas.
Total spending for the 2022 fiscal year will be around $450 billion, down from $497 billion the year before.
— With files from Canadian Press