Why You should vote for the NDP.
Well, its all over except for putting up the signs and pressing the flesh. By bedtime tomorrow, we will be into a new federal election.
This one is going to be a dead heat, despite some rather rosy polls from yesterday.
So, why should you vote for the NDP? In no particular order, here are some reasons:
1. Fiscal Responsibility - despite the propoganda, the NDP has been recognized as the most fiscally responsible federal party, by the government itself. In Saskatchewan, the provincial NDP government is taking a sensible approach to tax cuts - measured analysis rather than the 'hack and slash' style of the CPC and the Liberals. Tax cuts that take into account the reality of government finance rather than ideology. Imagine a fiscally responsible government that cuts taxes in a careful fashion, while maintaining its mandate.
2. Integrity - we stand by our principles and do what we say we will do. Ed Broadbent's 7 point ethics plan is merely the latest example (and dovetails nicely with the Conservative one). Rather than stoop to the immature name calling that infected Parliament, the NDP used compromise and negotiation to make Parliament work last spring. The result was the passing of a popular, better balanced budget (look, more fiscal responsiblitity!) that was better for regular Canadians, by getting rid of corporate tax breaks that even the TD Bank said were unneeded. And in the fall, we tried to do the same for healthcare, but to no avail. When that happened, the NDP and Jack Layton showed again the spirit of compromise and leadership when we worked with the opposition parties (some of whom considered the same compromise and negotiation spirit to be unprincipled in the spring) to present a reasonable alternative to a Christmas election, which the government has ignored.
This shows that while the NDP will stick by its principles, we are not blind ideologues and will work pragmatically with other parties in order to meet our objectives and to make things better for Canadians. We will work for consensus rather than use ideological driven partisan attacks as a method of change.
3. A Real vote for Change - The NDP is the only genuinely principled progressive party. The Liberals like to paint themselves as progressive at election time, but never seem to deliver. Fiscally, the Liberals have been more Conservative than the Conservatives. The only party that has consistently stood up for progressive issues has been the NDP. And considering that the idea of a CPC minority isn't nearly as scary as it once was, "strategic voting" does not mean much anymore. I join with guys like Greg at Sinister Thoughts ("Time for a Change"), who says that a strong NDP is the true progressive counterpoint to a possible Conservative minority and all Liberal supporters that are scared of the Conservatives should vote for th NDP.
Of course, I'm biased in this, but these are just a few of the main reasons for people to vote for the NDP. If changing the government is what is needed, a strong progressive voice without the taint of scandal is what is needed to counter the Conservatives. That voice belongs to jack Layton and the NDP, not the Liberals.
But whatever you decide, just vote. Vote your conscience, not to counter your fear. Vote based on policies and platforms, not name calling and mudslinging. If you are having trouble deciding which way to vote, always vote with your heart, - it’s on the left.