Wednesday, January 28, 2009
Is this the perfect budget? No, probably not. But the problem is that no one – NO ONE – can define the perfect budget for these times. This budget, much as I hate to admit it, stands just as good a chance of success in helping Canadians and Canada’s economy as any other – whether it’s put together by the Liberals, the NDP, the Bloc or the Green Party. And let’s be honest here, any alternative budget by any other party would only be remarkable in its similarity to Flaherty’s latest effort. (After all, the right wing media and blogosphere isn’t screaming about Budget 2009 because it’s too “Conservative”.)
And as for all the whinging, wailing and gnashing of teeth in the progressive blogosphere, the Liberal Party is well aware that its constituency extends far beyond the realm of the politically polarized who occupy these pages. The general Canadian population will see this budget as a pragmatic response to difficult times and expect their MPs (all MPs) to get on board and make this work. To simply vote non-confidence on principle and thereby trigger an election (for it surely would) would be viewed as crass political opportunism to be subsequently, and severely, punished at the polls.
So I have to agree with Ignatieff on this one. To bring the government down over this and leave Canada’s economy in this current holding pattern for several more months while we go through an election would simply be irresponsible, both to those Canadians who desperately need some help now, and to Liberal fortunes which would be seriously damaged (again) by forcing an election at this time.
It sucks, but deal with it.