Ont. election: Big unions vs. the rest of us

Liberal Leader Kathleen Wynne, PC Leader Tim Hudak and NDP Leader Andrea Horwath.

Liberal Leader Kathleen Wynne, PC Leader Tim Hudak and NDP Leader Andrea Horwath.

Christina Blizzard, Queen's Park Columnist

, Last Updated: 6:39 PM ET

TORONTO -- Voters face pivotal decisions as they head to the polls Thursday.

It's an election that pits big unions against the rest of Ontario.

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It's an election that speaks to incompetence, arrogance and the slow decay of morals and ethics in politics as a party that has been in power too long seeks a new mandate to pillage the public purse.

Some last-minute points to keep in mind:

The number of people who say they can't vote for PC Leader Tim Hudak because he was part of Mike Harris's cabinet is directly proportional to the number of people who say they aren't blaming Kathleen Wynne for the scandals involving her predecessor Dalton McGuinty, because she's a different person.

Mike Harris resigned as premier in 2001. McGuinty left office last year.

Unions -- especially public sector ones -- have unleashed their wrath -- and the considerable union dues of their membership -- to attack Hudak.

No fewer than 19 unions have joined in.

Public sector unions have benefited enormously from 11 years of Liberal mismanagement.

This is a showdown, with those unions putting millions into third-party advertising in an attempt to hang on to their lavish pay hikes, their fat pensions and perks.

They're astonished by the notion of a pay freeze -- while those of us in the private sector are just happy to hang on to our jobs.

Voters are surprisingly complacent about some of the scandals that have rocked the province.

In any other country, spending $1 billion to scrap power plants to save a couple of seats would have voters rioting in the streets. Here, we just yawn.

Meanwhile, our province is being driven deeper in debt.


Premier Kathleen Wynne heads down Mount Pleasant Rd. with her partner Jane to vote in Toronto on June 12, 2014. (Veronica Henri/QMI Agency)

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Lost in the debate about Hudak's math is any critical analysis of Finance Minister Charles Sousa's May 1 budget.

It's make-believe -- a fantasy document that claimed it would balance the books by 2017 -- but showed no way of doing so.

Economists have scoffed at Wynne's Ontario Pension Plan. It's another payroll tax that will drive companies out of this province. The only people who'll get a pension out of it are those under 30.

Watch out, though.

This province is drowning in a sea of red ink.

Thanks to irresponsible spending by the Liberal government, our debt is approaching $300 billion.

With no reasonable plan in place to get spending under control, you can bet the credit rating agencies will downgrade the province's credit rating as soon as the election is over. That will push our already staggering borrowing costs to the stratosphere.

In a cynical you-scratch-mine-I'll-scratch-yours deal with public sector unions, the Liberals have opened up the coffers and allowed the unions to plunder our pockets with massive pay hikes.

In return, these aforementioned unions spend millions of dollars each election to attack whoever is the PC leader.

They did it with Ernie Eves. They did it with John Tory. Now they're doing it to Hudak.

Until the advertising blackout kicked in Wednesday, you couldn't turn on a TV or radio without hearing some some union-funded attack ad.

The result?

This mudslinging is fuelling record cynicism about politics and politicians.

We all lament the lack of engagement -- especially by young people -- in the political process.

Is it any wonder when they see so much negativity?

At a time when we're looking for honesty, integrity and someone to inspire us, all we see are a group of self-interested union types telling us who not to vote for.

At a time when we most need people to step up, get out and mark an "X," most voters are simply tuning out.

That's what this election has been about.

Self-interested, self-entitled public sector unions buying themselves another four years of lavish pay hikes.

Lock up your wallets now.

Oh, yes. And get out and vote.


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