It became clear June 28 that Jason Kenney’s claims to the Calgary Sun that Alberta’s finances were worse off than the NDP claimed and that Alberta was actually headed for a second recession, were unfounded. Worse, he claimed the NDP lied about the financial situation of the province, stating, “They lied to Albertans about the economy and the revenues.”
But the numbers the UCP government released instead stated the opposite. The expenses of the government under the NDP were actually down by $300 million. The deficit was $2 billion lower than the NDP had estimated in its 2018 budget. This report shows the financial situation of the province was better than the NDP had said.
Kenny lied. He was either intentionally saying the opposite of the facts he knew, or he intentionally spoke about our province’s financial situation without having gathered the facts first. Either way, he was lying.
The fact that a majority government, newly elected on a promise of fiscal responsibility, starts its term by lying to Albertans about the financial position of the province, as it also moves to cost the province $13.5 billion ($4.5 billion in corporate tax cuts, $7 billion in cancelling the Climate Leadership Plan and $2 billion in cancelling the oil-by-rail plan), suggests it intends to hide its own fiscal mismanagement in false claims about the last government, and hopes Albertans will just buy it. That’s insulting to Albertans' intelligence, and it’s certainly not becoming of a government.
Kenney, Peter Guthrie and the UCP owe Albertans an apology, an explanation as to why they thought us so gullible and why they thought it appropriate to try to pull the wool over our eyes.