Mr. Harper responded by noting that Canada's hardly alone in running deficits today as tax revenue dips and stimulus spending strains the bank. And again with the jab at Mr. Ignatieff's plan to raise taxes:But we know that Mr. Harper and Mr. Flaherty brought us into deficit well before the global recession hit, for the umpteenth time and despite their spin:
"The fact is this: virtually every country in the world is running a deficit and the reason we are running a deficit is to take money the private sector is not using and to make sure it is employed for the benefit of the people who are losing their jobs," the Prime Minister said. "That's why we have surpluses in good times - so that we can act when times are tough. And none of that - there is no excuse for an agenda to raise taxes."
Parliamentary budget officer Kevin Page told MPs Thursday that Canada's deficit next year could be as high as $13 billion and that Conservative government decisions to cut the GST and raise government spending are to blame, not global economic events.That's the hole the Harper gang dug as they "prepared" us for the global recession. Inconvenient.
"The weak fiscal performance to date is largely attributable to previous policy decisions as opposed to weakened economic conditions," Page wrote in his first report to parliamentarians on the government's economic and fiscal position.
A point that apparently will need to be made on an ongoing basis.