Who’s just playing politics in Ontario now (and/or BC)?

Apr 30th, 2013 | By | Category: In Brief

[UPDATED MAY 3]. Some say the alleged Oakville gas-plant “revelations” of Ontario Power Authority chief executive Colin Andersen before a Queen’s Park legislative committee today bring an Ontario spring election close enough for jazz. And who knows? They may be right.

(Although listening to Andrea Horwath’s jousting with scandal-mongering media just before noon made us think there is still some room on the high ground for avoiding an election that most people of Ontario do not really need right now.)

We remain skeptical about both the public interest importance and practical political legs of the gas plant scandal, or whatever it more properly ought to be called.  The real question in Ontario politics today is which party leader is really the most principled and trustworthy? And the answer seems obvious enough.

Meawhile, both our Toronto focus group and Vaughn Palmer in the Vancouver Sun say that  Adrian Dix did best in last night’s BC election debate on TV.  (A Sun poll, on the other hand, currently has Christy Clark as the winner – by a substantial margin.  So … stay tuned.)

UPDATE MAY 3: Ms Wynne’s Liberals brought down their first Ontario budget yesterday. Whether Ms Horwath’s New Democrats will finally back the thing and avoid a fresh election remains unclear at the moment. But the government has certainly moved in their direction. And unless Ms Horwath finds some massive public outcry over the latest bumps in the so-called gas plant scandal, over the next short while, it would seem tricky at best for her party to fight an election on finance minister Charles Sousa’s budget. So “no Ontario election yet” also seems the direction in which the Queen’s Park commentariat is leaning at the moment. If this finally proves on the money, Canadian provincial election junkies will have to rest content with May 14 in beautiful BC, where the NDP seems on much more solid ground.

See, eg: “Ontario budget great politics. But does it make sense?: Walkom …  Ontario’s new budget may have squared enough political circles to keep Premier Kathleen Wynne’s government alive. But is it a credible economic blueprint for the province?”;”Ontario budget 2013: Liberals’ budget packed with NDP measures …  Premier Kathleen Wynne’s minority Liberals have delivered an Ontario budget full of NDP proposals, but it’s unclear whether the New Democrats will support it” ; “Ontario budget offers NDP an olive branch” ; “Ontario Budget Should be Approved, say CAW and CEP” ; “ONTARIO BUDGET: ‘I’m hard pressed to see why we’d have an election over this’, Craitor says of budget” ; and “NIMBYism at heart of Ontario’s gas plant scandal: Cohn … NIMBYism trumps cynicism as the most explosive and expensive political force of our time.”

(Meanwhile, back on the Wet Coast, according to the hard-working Andy Radia : “Are we seeing a Wildrose Party-type collapse in the B.C. election? …  According to a Forum Research poll, conducted after Monday night’s leaders debate, Christy Clark’s Liberal Party is now within four points of Adrian Dix’s NDP … Could the Liberals be in the midst of an epic comeback – just two weeks ago, polls suggested they were down by 18 points? …  Clark could make this a closer race, but are we really going to see a Wildrose type collapse by the NDP?… It’s possible but not likely.”)

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