Budget '09: The Reaction

"It's tough to trust this government on the numbers."

NDP leader Jack Layton: “This budget fails to restore confidence in Mr. Harper’s ability to protect the vulnerable in Canada.”

Bloc leader Gilles Duceppe: “Le bloc québécois va voter contre ce budget injuste et idéologique, qui ne répond pas aux priorités du québec.”

Green Party leader Elizabeth May: “A deficit of staggering proportions will be created with nothing more than a wish and a prayer in the government’s projections to return to balanced budgets. It is hard to imagine the budget being supported by fiscal conservatives or social progressives. Indeed it is hard to imagine anyone thinking this budget meets the needs of Canadians.”

“To top off the economic incompetence of this budget, there is nothing for the environment.”

Liberal MP Scott Brison: “It’s tough to trust this government on the numbers. The deficit numbers keep growing, and we’re concerned that if we can’t trust their numbers over the last couple of months, we can’t trust it over five years.”

Liberal MP Wayne Easter: “It sounds like a lot of money, but is spread over a large population, so we’ll see.”

B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell: “This is a positive platform for progress, for productivity. It’s really a call for partnership with other levels of government, and we are certainly ready to go there.”

Michael Atkinson, President of the Canadian Construction Association: “Our industry is pleased the government recognized that the best and quickest way to get Canadians back to work is through investments in infrastructure-every billion dollars invested means more than 11,500 jobs. We have both an infrastructure and economic crisis-the time is right to accelerate the long overdue modernization of Canada’s crumbling infrastructure in a way that will create jobs, stimulate economic recovery, and better our communities while providing Canadian taxpayers with the best bang for their stimulus buck.”

David Macdonald, an analyst with the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives: “Only five per cent of today’s budget is actually devoted to tax measures to help vulnerable low income Canadians,” Macdonald says. “In the coming recession, the government will help you adjust the colour palette of your kitchen, but if you’re poor you’ll be on your own.”

Jean Perrault, President of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) and Mayor of Sherbrooke: “With all orders of government working around the same table, with the same goal, today’s budget will create tens of thousands of jobs, boost our flagging economy, and deliver value to Canadians for generations to come. Municipalities are ready to get started.”