Ontario budget could trigger election if NDP rejects it

As expected, Ontario’s governing Liberals tabled a budget yesterday afternoon that will ask tough concessions from public servants. The Toronto Star reports that Premier Dalton McGuinty’s budget proposed to freeze wages for 1.2 million public servants:

…teachers, doctors, nurses, hospital workers and others on the public payroll will just have to make do… “If Ontario does not take strong action, the deficit will grow, which would mean unsustainable levels of debt,” [Finance Minister Dwight] Duncan said as he tabled his $126.4 billion plan, the largest ever.

Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak announced his party will vote to reject the proposed budget, arguing there is no plan for job creation. This leaves NDP Leader Andrea Horwath with a choice to either support the Liberal budget or trigger a new election only five months after the last one took place.

Quoted by the CBC, Horwath said she won’t make a decision until she hears from Ontarians:

“Once I get the feedback from Ontarians and Ontario families, then I’ll decide how to proceed,” Horwath said. “Do they like the budget? Do they not like the budget? What do they like? What don’t they like? Are they prepared to consider going to an election over this budget?”

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