While the government isn't giving any guarantees Canada will buy the F-35, Prime Minister Stephen Harper said the country will remain involved in the stealth fighter project to ensure Canadian companies can continue participating.Harper early in 2011:
"We have received literally hundreds of millions of dollars in contracts for the Canadian aerospace industry. This is not a trivial matter," Harper said at the conclusion of a major summit on nuclear security in Seoul on Tuesday.
"We haven't yet signed a contract, as you know. We retain that flexibility. But we are committed to continuing our aerospace sector's participation in the development of the F-35."
Harper delivered a sharply partisan message that his opponents would cost the area jobs if they cancelled the program. He illustrated his point by surrounding himself with aerospace workers.
“Contracts like this are not a political game,” Harper said, speaking from a blue podium with government Action Plan slogans perched around him.
“It is about lives and, as you well know, it is about jobs.”
With thousands of aerospace jobs in the region, Harper made it clear that those workers will play a central role in the Tory campaign.Any questions?
“I do find it disappointing, I find it sad, that some in Parliament are backtracking on the F-35 and some are talking openly about cancelling the contract, should they get the chance,” Harper said at the Heroux-Devtek plant in Dorval.
“Cancelling a contract that way would be completely irresponsible. The opposition parties must stop playing partisan games with these crucial contracts.”
Update: Speaking of aerospace jobs, if a certain someone cares as much as he used to protest...