In Their Own Words: Conservative Platform Includes $53 Billion in Cuts – Including $14 Billion in Hidden Cuts

October 12, 2019

On the Friday before the Thanksgiving long weekend, after all the Leaders’ debates have passed, and after thousands of Canadians have already cast their ballot, Andrew Scheer finally released his platform, which includes $53 billion in cuts, including $14 billion in hidden cuts.

Canadians have nothing to thank Andrew Scheer for this Thanksgiving. Here’s what people are saying about Andrew Scheer’s reckless plan:

Quotations are included in their original language

“Well this is incompetent. Infrastructure spending desperately needs to go up, not down.”Emmett Macfarlane (University of Waterloo), Twitter, October 11, 2019

“What party releases its platform the Friday of a long weekend? One that doesn’t want too much attention focused on it would be my guess.”Gary Mason (Globe & Mail), Twitter, October 11, 2019

“Over and over again, Conservatives have demonstrated hostility towards Canada’s workers. Today, Andrew Scheer is doubling down on that hostility and seeking a mandate to cut. With a platform loaded with job-killing service cuts, it’s clear that Andrew Scheer represents an equal threat to Canadians as Stephen Harper.”Hassan Yussuff (President of the Canadian Labour Congress), October 12, 2019

« Un gouvernement conservateur imposerait des compressions budgétaires de plusieurs dizaines de milliards de dollars dans son premier mandat. »Philippe-Vincent Foisy et Hugo Prévost (Radio-Canada), 11 octobre, 2019

“Cities and communities across the country have an urgent need for increased investment in infrastructure. Proposed measures in this platform appear to move in the opposite direction, with fewer infrastructure dollars available year-over-year to create jobs, improve roads and bridges, and maintain the local services Canadians rely on.”Bill Karsten (President of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities), October 11, 2019

« Assurément, pour que Montréal puisse poursuivre son élan, les partis doivent accroître leurs investissements en matière d’infrastructures et de transports en commun, notamment pour la ligne rose »Cabinet de la Ville de Montréal (Le Devoir), 12 octobre 2019

“If what you seek is a coherent vision of conservatism in the 21st century, you will have to look elsewhere.”Andrew Coyne (National Post), October 11, 2019

“The largest cuts are in unspecified “other operating expenses” – $14.4 billion over five years. The Conservatives suggest they can achieve that through reining in travel spending, consulting fees, and cutting down on federal office space.”Alex Boutilier (Toronto Star), Twitter, October 11, 2019

“The second largest proposed spending cut in the platform is a plan to save $14-billion over five years on federal government operating expenses, which are not detailed in the platform.”Marieke Walsh (Globe & Mail), Twitter, October 11, 2019

« Ces coupes seraient plus importantes que celles du gouvernement Harper dans les années 2010 et représentent des « risques significatifs », selon l’Institut des finances publiques et de la démocratie. »Vincent Brousseau-Pouliot (La Presse), 12 octobre 2019

“The party said shrinking the size of cubicle space for public servants could be one of the ways to save that money.”Marieke Walsh (Globe & Mail), Twitter, October 11, 2019

“The single biggest saving measure is putting off some infrastructure spending. That will save $18-billion over five years.”David Akin (Global), Twitter, October 11, 2019

« On savait déjà que M. Scheer voulait sabrer les subventions aux entreprises et l’aide étrangère, afin de récupérer au total 3 milliards de dollars par année. On sait maintenant où il ira chercher les dizaines de milliards additionnels qui lui manquaient pour remiser l’encre rouge. Ainsi, M. Scheer propose d’amputer 18 milliards de dollars au cours des cinq prochaines années des budgets d’infrastructures. »Hélène Buzzetti et Marie Vastel (Le Devoir), 12 octobre 2019

“Now we see why this was released late on a Friday before a long weekend. Some big cuts with few specifics.”Don Martin (CTV News), Twitter, October 11, 2019

“The Conservative plan to balance the budget includes some serious cuts, including: – Cutting $1.5 billion a year by reviewing business subsidy programs -“Prioritizing” infrastructure spending, which would eliminate $1.3 billion in 2020-21 – Cutting foreign aid by $1.5 billion” Rachel Gilmore (CTV News), Twitter, October 11, 2019

“The Conservative platform has no mention of pharmacare or a new general national prescription drug plan. Earlier this year, the Conservative health critic suggested to media they would have a plan that would fill in the gaps for people w/o insurance. It’s not there”Cormac Mac Sweeney (CityNews), Twitter, October 11, 2019

“Vote for me and I’ll shrink your cubicle!”Stephen Maher (Maclean’s), Twitter, October 11, 2019

“Canadian govt controls 38,341 buildings. If Conservatives seriously want to pare back this number, they’ll start with, um, military. Smaller barracks? Munitions bunk beds?”Jason Markusoff (Maclean’s), Twitter, October 11, 2019

“I’ve avoided the Doug Ford – Andrew Scheer comparisons because they’re definitely different people but the details coming out about the CPC fiscal plans, particularly on the cutting side, are eerily Ford-esque.”Emmett Macfarlane (University of Waterloo), Twitter, October 11, 2019

“No #pharmacare plan; no plan to take on Big Pharma and reduce prescription drug costs. So much for @CPC_HQ and @AndrewScheer ‘putting everyday Canadians first’.”Canadian Federation of Nurses Unions, Twitter, October 11, 2019

“I think the prospect of the Conservatives saving $22 billion from “operating reductions” or $11 billion from cracking down on tax cheats is as likely to succeed as Scheer ordering the Salish Sea to reverse itself.”John Ivison (National Post), October 12, 2019

« Le retour à l’équilibre budgétaire ne se fera pas sans compressions. Andrew Scheer prévoit couper dans les investissements en infrastructures à hauteur de 18 G$ sur cinq ans. À cela s’ajoutent 14 G$ en réduction des dépenses de fonctionnement… »Guillaume St-Pierre (Journal de Montréal), 12 octobre 2019

“Tory costing of a carbon tax repeal. Apparently over five years, the net cost to the Government of giving up THIS MASSIVE TAX HIKE TAKING BILLIONS OF DOLLARS OUT OF CANADIANS’ POCKETS is actually only about $180M. Imagine that.”Alex Usher (Higher Education Strategy Associates), Twitter, October 11, 2019

“The Conservative party says it will cut $18-billion in infrastructure spending days after Mr. Scheer criticized the Liberals for not spending enough on infrastructure.”Denise Balkissoon (Globe & Mail), Twitter, October 11, 2019

“There’s about $53 million in cuts, so changes that [the Conservatives] say are savings but are essentially cuts to different programs.”Annie Bergeron Oliver (CTV Power Play), October 11, 2019

“Friday afternoon release, just ahead of a long weekend, that usually means bad news and the conservative blueprint for governing which came out less than an hour ago shows some startling ways to cut spending that had not been disclosed before.”Don Martin (CTV Power Play), October 11, 2019

“This is Harper’s cuts on steroids. It’s going to hurt Canadians and the public services they rely on. Once again, Conservatives are trying to eliminate the evidence that’s required to create sound policy for all of Canada.”Debi Daviau (President of Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada), Twitter, October 11, 2019

« Les troupes de M. Scheer comptent prioriser les dépenses faites par le fédéral en infrastructure, apprend-on dans le cadre financier des conservateurs. Ces derniers entendent ainsi aller chercher 1,3 milliard $ dès 2020-2021. Au terme de cinq ans, les conservateurs pensent ainsi pouvoir mettre de côté un total de 18 milliards $. Ce montant élevé a surpris l’experte en finances publiques Geneviève Tellier, de l’Université d’Ottawa. «C’est quand même majeur. Il va y avoir des projets qui n’auront pas lieu», croit-elle. » Émilie Bergeron (TVA Nouvelles), 11 octobre 2019

“I think there are a lot of people and economists questioning whether this budget is putting too much emphasis on trying to find savings of balancing the budget instead of putting money into the economy.”Annie Bergeron Oliver (CTV Power Play), October 11, 2019

“[The Conservatives] are going to have to lay off public services to get those sorts of savings.”Kevin Page (Institute of Fiscal Studies and Democracy), CBC Power & Politics, Twitter, October 11, 2019

“@CPC_HQ costed platform has no funding for a national dementia strategy. We’ve asked @AndrewScheer how his party, if elected, will meet the government’s statutory obligation to implement a national strategy, without funding? “Dementia Justice, Twitter, October 11, 2019

“Andrew Scheer is promising to slash infrastructure spending… The Conservatives employed a series of fictions to pretend the infrastructure cuts – the single largest budget-balancing measure in the Conservative platform – aren’t really cuts.”Campbell Clark (Globe and Mail), October 11, 2019

“I’ve read the Conservative Party platform and am disappointed to not see any direct mention of First Nations people. Increased investments are critical to First Nations’ success, which is why the Conservatives need to publicly explain how they will support our priorities. First Nations priorities are Canada’s priorities, and if focused on and implemented they will result in a better Canada for everyone.”Perry Bellegarde, National Chief, Assembly of First Nations, Twitter, October 11, 2019

« Les conservateurs repoussent les projets d’infrastructure pour atteindre l’équilibre »La Presse Canadienne, 11 octobre 2019

“The Conservatives intend to make major spending cuts, if elected.”John Ivison (National Post), October 12, 2019

“Conservative leader Andrew Scheer revealing election platform in Delta— the key is how he plans to bring the budget back to balance in five years. That involves $53-billion in cuts.” – Martin MacMahon (NEWS 1130), Twitter, October 11, 2019

“On the Manitoba side, the federal Tory platform doesn’t mention Manitoba Hydro at all in talk of the electricity corridor (hydro and pipeline right-of-way). Quebec gets even more sway in immigration but nothing about boosting the provincial-nominee quota despite MB seeking more.”Dylan Robertson (Winnipeg Free Press), Twitter, October 11, 2019