The Conservative MP for Mississauga-Brampton South stood before Question Period to lament the NDP’s support for cap-and-trade.
Mr. Speaker, I had the great pleasure of meeting with my constituents and neighbours last week in Mississauga and hearing about their extreme opposition to the NDP’s $21 billion carbon tax, a tax which won a new friend and a new foe last week. The new foe is President Barack Obama’s administration, whose press secretary told reporters that: “We would never propose a carbon tax and have no intention of proposing one. Our focus right now is on economic growth and job creation.”
That much is true. President Obama’s press secretary did say those words. But cap-and-trade is what the NDP has proposed. And President Obama previously proposed a cap-and-trade system. The use of the word “would” probably requires further explanation, but it could be read to suggest that the Obama administration still recognizes a distinction between cap-and-trade and a carbon tax. (A distinction the Conservatives no longer acknowledge.)
This is good news for middle class families, but the carbon tax does have at least one new supporter: Exxon, the gas station company. While NDP members align themselves with big oil, Conservatives will continue aligning themselves with families, and fighting for middle class families. The NDP’s Exxon-backed $21 billion carbon tax: our money; their pockets.
Here is the real trouble. Exxon does indeed support a carbon tax. But Exxon expressly supports a carbon tax over the alternative of cap-and-trade. The company actually lobbied against cap-and-trade when it was being considered in Washington three years ago. So Exxon and the NDP actually have opposite positions: Exxon has voiced for support for a carbon tax and actively opposed cap-and-trade, while the NDP has proposed cap-and-trade and rejected a carbon tax.