OTTAWA, ON: The Canadian Taxpayers Federation today slammed the Trudeau government’s reckless plans to permanently increase federal government spending by nearly 30 per cent by 2026.
“Make no mistake: the vast majority of measures in this budget have nothing to do with pandemic supports, and everything to do with exploiting a deadly crisis to indulge in a cynical, debt-fuelled spending binge,” said CTF Federal Director Franco Terrazzano. “Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland will increase permanent federal spending by more than $100 billion by 2026 with absolutely no idea how to pay for it.”
Many of the new permanent measures announced in Budget 2021 were not even being considered prior to the pandemic.
“The Trudeau government now insists it has $30 billion to spend on a one-size-fits-all government daycare program?” said Terrazzano. “If they understood we could not afford such an enormous new program when the deficit was only $20 billion, how can they claim with a straight face we can now afford it with the deficit at $354 billion. Whether before, during or after the pandemic, and whether the economy is growing or not, this government only seems to have one solution to everything: borrow more and spend more.”
Budget 2021 also projects that the federal deficit will still be $30 billion by 2026, when debt interest payments are projected to rise to $39 billion annually.
“By betting the house on ‘interest rates will stay low forever,’ Minister Freeland is playing roulette with Canada’s fiscal sustainability,” said Terrazzano.
In spite of pledging not to raise taxes, Budget 2021 also introduces a raft of new taxes and tax hikes, including higher tobacco taxes, a vaping tax, sales taxes for digital services, and a luxury goods tax.
Budget 2021’s only reference to spending restraint is a commitment to reduce government travel.
“Canadians shouldn’t kid themselves: either spending will have to be reined in, or there will be walloping tax hikes coming eventually,” said Terrazzano. “In the meantime, the Trudeau government continues to kick the can down the road, leaving future generations to be stuck paying for their recklessness.”