What a disappointment. What a change from his promise to reach consensus before he was elected. What other promise can he possibly breach in the next 3 years ? Please call an election and see what your constituents think. Enough is enough.
Reader feed back : This is a "F" outrage. Ontario is no longer the economic engine that drives the Canadian economy.If this asshole didn't f----- up everything he touched, we wouldn't have a fiscal problem
Hamilton: "McGuinty drags Que. into war with feds
Wants Ottawa to review equalization payment program
Colin Perkel Canadian Press February 12, 2005
TORONTO -- Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty dragged Quebec into his dispute with Ottawa on Saturday as he continued to attack the federal government over how the country's wealth is distributed among the provinces.
In a speech to more than 300 provincial Liberals, McGuinty noted that Ottawa gives Quebec almost four times as much money for each immigrant as it gives Ontario.
'How can that be fair?' McGuinty asked. 'We're just asking for a bit of fairness.'
The crowd gave McGuinty a standing ovation as he portrayed himself as a proud Canadian standing up to injustice.
On Friday, the Ontario premier served notice of a 'strong campaign' against the federal Liberals over the country's fiscal arrangements. The final straw, he said, was the royalty agreement for off-shore resources that Prime Minister Paul Martin struck recently with Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador.
In his speech Saturday, McGuinty repeatedly noted the '$23-billion gap' between what Ontario contributes to federal coffers and how much it receives in return.
The missing money, he said, is critical to the province's ability to fund services for immigrants, post-secondary education and other social programs.
'A gap this massive just doesn't make sense, especially when Ottawa sits on a huge surplus funded largely by Ontarians,' he said.
Only a prosperous Ontario can continue to be the 'economic engine' and 'heart' of Canada, he told the crowd.
'When we make this argument now with our friends over at the federal government, it's about buil"a stronger win-win for our fellow Canadians."
Other provinces, such as Saskatchewan, New Brunswick and British Columbia, have also begun to criticize the country's system of equalization payments in light of the deal struck with the two Atlantic provinces.
Speaking to reporters afterward, McGuinty said he was looking for a "healthy discussion" with the Martin Liberals.
He said raising the unfairness of immigrant funding was another step in the campaign but other issues, such as post-secondary education, were also on the agenda.
"We have a responsibility to make this argument," the premier said. "The federal government has no choice but to listen to us. The facts are on our side. It's a very compelling argument."
McGuinty came to office 16 months ago promising to move beyond the acrimony that developed between Ontario and Ottawa under the previous provincial Conservative government.
His increasingly vocal criticism of Ottawa this past week indicates a complete change of tack.
Asked if he was simply trying to deflect attention from problems his government is facing, he said he was just standing up for his own province.
Among those problems is a $5.5-billion budget deficit and bubbling dispute with the province's doctors, who have become increasingly vocal in their attacks on McGuinty's Liberal government.