Repeat after him - Macleans.ca

Repeat after him

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The prepared text of Mr. Harper’s remarks to a rally in Brampton this morning, including no less than 21 instances of the word “coalition.”

“Friends, yesterday I reluctantly visited the Governor-General.  I say reluctantly because as much as I appreciate your enthusiasm, as much as I enjoy campaigning all across this great country, and as confident as I am in our team and our chances, this is not where I should be.

“Not where any of us: Leaders, Ministers, MPs, should be.  We should all be back in Ottawa.  At our desks.  And working!

“Working to protect our economic advantage.  Working to complete our economic recovery.  And working to keep your taxes down by implementing the budget that the minister of finance tabled on Tuesday.  That budget is the next phase of Canada’s Economic Action Plan, a plan by which this country, Canada, has been leading the global recovery!

“It is a low-tax plan of critical importance to jobs, growth and the financial security of hardworking Canadian families.

“But, as you know, the Liberal-NDP-Bloc Québécois Coalition had a different priority: an election the country didn’t want, an election the economy doesn’t need.

“So, we come to you, the Canadian people, to get a mandate to pass our budget and complete our economic recovery!

“So here it is my friends: the Coalition said no to an increase in income for Canada’s most vulnerable senior citizens, an increase we can afford without raising your taxes.  Conservatives say yes!

“The Coalition said no to a tax credit for the cost of children’s arts programs, something we can afford without raising your taxes.  Conservatives say yes!

“The Coalition said no to an incentive to recruit and retain volunteer firefighters, something we can afford without raising your taxes.  Conservatives say yes!

“The Coalition said no to tax relief for family caregivers and to elimination of the cap on the medical expense tax credit, something we can afford without raising your taxes.  Conservatives say yes!

“The Coalition said no to protecting in legislation the gas tax fund for municipal infrastructure, something we can afford without raising your taxes.  Conservatives say yes!

“The Coalition said no to increases in income exemption for student loans and increased eligibility for part-time students, something we can afford without raising your taxes.  Conservatives say yes!

“The Coalition said no to investments in advanced research and higher education and investments in young entrepreneurs, something we can afford without raising your taxes.  Conservatives say yes!

“The Coalition said no to a break on EI premiums for small businesses that create new jobs and a plan to reduce unnecessary red tape.  Something we can afford without raising your taxes.  Conservatives say yes!

“The Coalition said no to a two-year extension of the incentive for manufacturing firms to invest in new machinery, something we can afford without raising your taxes.  Conservatives say yes!

“The Coalition said no to transition to work programs for our Canadian Armed Forces Veterans, something we can afford without raising your taxes.  Conservatives say yes!

“The Coalition said no to work-sharing and initiatives targetted to unemployed older workers, something we can afford without raising your taxes.  Conservatives say yes!

“The Coalition said no to investments in youth gang prevention programs and to keeping real criminals behind bars, something we can afford without raising your taxes.  Conservatives say yes!

“The Coalition said no to enhanced access to the Registered Disability Savings Program, something we can afford without raising your taxes.  Conservatives say yes!

“The Coalition said no to home energy retrofits to reduce home heating costs, something we can afford without raising your taxes.  Conservatives say yes!

“The Coalition said no to eliminating the deficit by reducing the cost of government, not by cutting pensions, health care and education and not by raising taxes.  Conservatives say yes!

“Friends, Canadians say yes!

“From the Canadian Federation of Independent Business to the Federation of Canadian Municipalities to even the Canadian Labour Congress, they said yes to these things!

“So why aren’t we working at our desks to deepen our economic recovery, to create more jobs for workers, to give greater financial security to families?

“Why an election?

“You know why.

“I know why.

“And they know why.

“The Liberals, the NDP, and the Bloc Québécois have a common goal and a single plan.

“Maybe nobody wants an election, but, friends, they don’t think they need to win this election.  Just hold us to another minority, and they will move with lightning speed to re-create and re-impose their reckless, unprincipled Coalition on Canadians.

“They did it before.  It is obvious they will do it again.  And, next time, they won’t allow any way of stopping it.  And Canada will all pay a terrible price.

“What is it, by the way, that these Coalition partners actually agree on?

“We know – spend more and raise taxes to pay for it.

“It’s been their message in parliament.

“It will be their message in this campaign.

“It’s always their message.

“The NDP, and most of Mr. Ignatieff’s Liberals, have never in their lives been in a position where they had to say no to new spending.

“So the Coalition will spend more than we could ever imagine.  It’s the only thing they’ll be able to agree on, and they will raise your taxes to pay for it.

“Already they say ‘a sales tax hike isn’t off the table.’  They need to raise EI premiums 35 per cent to pay for their 45-day work year.

“They need to raise taxes on employers, something no other country is even contemplating.

“They need a carbon tax, an iPod tax, and on it goes.

“And the Bloc Québécois — imagine giving a role of government to a party committed to the breakup of Canada.

“You know, when you’re in government, you have to know that you and your colleagues are committed to working together.

“How can you commit to work together if we’re not even committed to each other as Canadians.

“Friends, we are living in a fragile global recovery.

“Yes, Canada is doing relatively well, but a sea of troubles is lapping at our shores.

“Disaster in the Pacific, chaos in the Middle East, debt problems in Europe, and, of course, some very serious challenges just south of our border.

“Canada is the closest thing the world has to an island of security and stability.

“What would the world think were we to suddenly now head off in a whole-new, high-tax economic direction, led by a reckless Coalition without a coherent program or even basic national principles?

“Friends, that is why Canada must have a strong, stable national government, and only — only — this party, the Conservative Party, can provide it.

“We have given Canadians stability and security through the global crisis of the past couple of years.

“But we have also given it strength.  This country is emerging from the worst global financial crisis in 80 years in a position of unprecedented strength in the world.

“If we stay on track, another good century, an even better century, awaits our country.

“You remember that Laurier said that the twentieth century would belong to Canada.  But even Laurier in his most optimistic, could never have imagined what i saw as Prime Minister: Canada, among all the nations of the world, winning the most gold medals in a Winter Olympic Games ever.

“This, of course, was a testament to the greatness of the young men and women who wore Canada’s colours.  But it is also a demonstration for all of us as Canadians of the true potential of this entire country.

“It shows what Canadians can do when we have a goal, when we have a plan, and when we are committed to our country and to each other.

“You, the people in this room, you are those kinds of Canadians.  You have taken us farther than anyone thought possible even just a few short years ago.  But you’ve believed, you’ve worked and you’ve succeeded, and the country, your country, is better for it.

“Now is not the time for unnecessary risk or political gambles.

“We all know that it is the time to protect our economic advantage, to complete our economic recovery and to keep our taxes down.

“Friends, I know you are here for one thing.  You are here for Canada.

“That is why people live here in Brampton, people who have come to this country from the world over because they believe in this country.

“They don’t want MPs who are going to sign on to Mr. Ignatieff’s Coalition with the NDP and Bloc Québécois as soon as the election is over.  They know Canada needs a government with a clear direction for our economy, a government that is stable, national and wholly committed to the unity of our country.

“On May 2, as I ask you, and on my behalf, I ask you to ask your family, your friends, your neighbours, your colleagues, to choose the economy, to choose security, to choose stability by choosing a strong, national, Conservative government for Canada.

“Thank you all for your efforts.  God bless Canada.”