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Chad E. Regan
Chad Regan is a 4L at the Faculty of Law at McGill.

Maxime Bernier – A Courageous New Direction for Canada

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In a Conservative leadership race where some candidates think they’re running as Donald Trump’s VP, others seem to think they’re running as Justin Trudeau’s environment minister, and yet others seem to believe “I think it’s important to parler francais” counts as Quebec outreach, Maxime Bernier is a refreshing free-market conservative who brings to the fore a mission and vision of the Conservative Party that is what a conservative party should be.

 

While Michael Chong, who appears to have missed the memo that Donald Trump has been elected south of the boarder, argues for a new ‘revenue neutral’ tax on carbon (read, tax on everything), Bernier is supporting a progressive environmental policy that recognizes Canada’s status as an emitter producing 1.6% of the world’s global carbon, and promotes innovation for export by reducing barriers to market access, reducing taxes, and cutting red-tape to provide the type of environment needed to stimulate real progress in green tech. The crux on which Chong is proposing his tax- its revenue neutrality- would, rather than proportionately punish heavy emitters, give a major income tax break to the rich — sometimes buying your new Tesla just requires a bit of government intervention. In an election between Chong and Trudeau, electors might just as well vote on the silky shimmer of Justin’s hair- in terms of policy, the difference leaves one wanting.

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The Bernier tax plan is stark in contrast to the bottomless pit that is the Trudeau-Morneau appetite for money that isn’t theirs. Maxime’s fiercely small-government plan recognizes the ability of every Canadian to flourish when not burdened by government interference- Bernier would see the current five tax brackets reduced to two: 15% for income below $100 000 and 25% for income above it. Maxime also proposes to reduce the tax burden on those at the lowest end by increasing the personal allowance amount from $11 474 to $15 000. Bernier’s tax plan reflects his will to unleash Canadian ingenuity by reducing government. This lies in sharp contrast to the Trudeau liberals: Maxime believes Canadians flourish when the government knows the value of a dollar, Trudeau believes Canadians flourish when he sends them a cheque of their own tax dollars.

 

Perhaps one of the most exciting tenets of Bernier’s campaign is his irreverence for the sacred cows of government. While other candidates pursue McCarthyite policies to fight the shadows of un-Canadian values, Bernier has the courage to stand up to the real issues. Canadians pay nearly double what most other major OECD citizens do for dairy and milk products. Supply management is a system that is unfair, out of touch with the market, and leads to fewer options both for Canadian consumers and for dairy and poultry farmers. The poultry and dairy markets have long expired: Maxime is the only candidate who recognizes this.

Maxime Bernier believes in a Canadian government that is faithful to the Constitution: that means, promoting a Canada where inter-provincial free-trade is facilitated not by private citizens, but by the federal government. A Canada that is in-touch with the social values of modern Canadians, not fearful of the ‘other’, and who doesn’t simply claim to be ‘back’, as the Trudeau Liberals, but that demonstrates its strength and freedom through courageous policies that work for Canadians. Bernier’s slogan may be ‘Believe’, but the proof is in the pudding: Maxime Bernier is the leader Canada needs.

 

Chad Regan volunteers for the Maxime Bernier Campaign

The Prince Arthur Herald

Photo Credit:Twitter @MaximeBernier