Canadians Get Smart

Harper Wins Clear Path to Tax, Spending Cuts in Canadian Vote

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper won a majority of seats in Parliament for the first time, giving his Conservative Party a mandate to secure the economic recovery with additional tax cuts and erase the country’s deficit with curbs on government spending.

Harper’s party was ahead or leading in 167 of 308 districts, according to results posted on Election Canada’s website as of 2:36 a.m. New York time. Jack Layton’s pro-labor New Democratic Party was leading in 102 seats to form the official opposition, followed by 34 for the Liberal Party led by Michael Ignatieff, three for the Bloc Quebecois and one for the Green Party.

The victory ends seven years of minority governments that have fueled government spending, and puts the Conservatives in firm control of the federal agenda for the first time since the early 1990s. Harper pledged to balance Canada’s budget by 2014 after running record deficits during the recession, even as he moves ahead with personal and corporate income tax cuts to help sustain the expansion.

Harper, 52, had governed since 2006 with a minority of seats, meaning he’s had to rely on support from opposition lawmakers to pass laws and implement his fiscal plans. He campaigned on a plea to voters for a majority to end the string of elections that he said were threatening the country’s ability to recover from recession. Canada has had four elections in the past seven years.

Under Harper, program expenditures have increased by 40 percent to C$245 billion as the Conservative leader sought to placate opposition parties and win favor with voters.


In a move toward longer term stability, Canadians finally elected a majority Conservative government yesterday. While politics in Canada rarely make headlines in America or overseas, this latest development is one that should reduce risks to the United States.


This quiet northern neighbor is the largest supplier of oil to the US, sending more than double that of Saudi Arabia.

Under an NDP - Liberal coalition government, with their socialist ideals, no one knows what hare-brained policies would be implemented to crimp economic activity and civil liberties.

Now the Conservatives (roughly equivalent to the Republicans, but generally more libertarian) can get on task to reign in Canada's large deficit and debt and position the country to a point where it can better weather the next economic crisis.