03.17.2018 01:05 PM

Don’t count Horwath out

Check this out:

An NDP government would provide Ontarians with dental benefits and pay off students’ post-secondary loans, said leader Andrea Horwath in a speech Saturday that gave a glimpse into her party’s election platform.

“We know we can do better to make sure that everyone can build a good life, right here in Ontario,” she said, outlining five key parts of the party’s upcoming promises for the June 7 election, which also includes improvements to health and long-term care, returning Hydro One to public ownership while cutting rates, universal pharmacare, and boosting corporate tax rates.

“We can help people be healthier, and make more life affordable in Ontario, if we help more people go to the dentist,” she told the NDPs provincial council.

“We are going to make sure every working person in Ontario has dental benefits. And we will make the largest investment in public dental coverage in Ontario’s history — so that every senior can get the dental care they need. And every person on social assistance can get the dental care they need.”

The dental program will be called “Ontario Benefits” and will be portable, moving with Ontarians when they switch employers, she said.

It’ll be pretty hard for Wynne to attack her over this, given the spending spree that is about to be unleashed in the upcoming budget.  Ford can attack it, but everything Horwath is saying is pretty populist.

This election is going to be fun.  Don’t count Horwath out of it!


  1. Matt says:

    And she’ll pay for it how exactly??

    • Steve T says:

      Socialists don’t worry about that question. They just trust that their gullible followers will swallow-up the promises, and expect someone else will pay.

      • Patrick says:

        Spoiled adult brats live a socialist dream and expect everybody else to be a capitalist – Thew-y grow up soft, probably have their daddy pay for school, take vacations to Disney World, talk about hard work they’ve never done at the job they got from a crony connection, and then expect rugged individualism from everybody else – something they they’ve never experienced –

        • Luke says:

          Good god, you guys are a bunch of bitter old dicks. Way to generalize so greatly as to render yourselves as your own caricatures.

          • Patrick says:

            That’s funny. I was thinking about this, and i think the trappings of both the delusion of status, and the hopelessness of poverty are very similar.

            One assumes their easy ride should define their entire existence without having anything special to offer, and tend to cling to rhetorical bullshit about hard this, and tough that – blah blah – wimp.

            The other in poverty feels hopeless, and that the system is rigged to keep them down (which, for the most part, it is) irrespective of their ability, or work ethic, or even education.

            from one old dick to another –

          • doconnor says:

            He is wrong to generalize. He should specifically say he is talking about Donald Trump and Doug Ford.

    • doconnor says:

      Raising taxes on the wealthy and defacit spending.

      How will Ford pay for this tax cuts, on the shoulders of the poor, of course.

  2. Matt says:

    From the article:
    “Don’t“We know we can do better to make sure that everyone can build a good life, right here in Ontario,” she said, outlining five key parts of the party’s upcoming promises for the June 7 election, which also includes improvements to health and long-term care, returning Hydro One to public ownership while cutting rates, universal pharmacare, and boosting corporate tax rates.”

    1) How exactly will she return Ontario Hydro to public ownership again?

    2) She’s going to raise corpotate taxes so they’ll have to pay higher taxes on top of cap and trade costs and the minimum wage hike. Yeah, I don’t see a whole lot of companies willing to stick around or come into Ontario with the promise of increased operating costs.

    These are the kinds of promises a third party makes when they don’t think they’re going to win the election and actually have to fulfill.

    • doconnor says:

      She explained when it was first announced, it would be with the profits from Hydro One.

      She is also cutting business expenses by taking over prescription, dental and some education costs.

      • Matt says:

        1) The profits from the sale are long gone.

        2) What if the private entities who currently own 60% of Ontario Hydro don’t want to sell their share back to the government? Then what?

        3) The Financial Accountability Office has reported Wynnes free prescription plan for those aged 24 and under could cost more than double the Liberals estimate of $465 million per year. And Horwath thinks her plan to cover EVERY Ontarian for the 125 most common drugs will only cost $10 million more than the Liberals plan at $475 million.

        • doconnor says:

          She means on future profits from the shares of Hydro One the government owns. Buying it back bit by bit shouldn’t be a problem on the stock market.

          • Matt says:

            There shouldn’ be any “profits” on the government owned portion.

            After expenses for generation and employee costs are paid out anything left should be going into system upgrades.

          • doconnor says:

            I’m glad you share Horwath vision for how Hydro should work, but as a for profit company, Hydro One returns profits to its shareholders.

      • Matt says:

        And what do you think insurance companies are going to do when the government is puts in prescription and dental coverage? They are going to drop dental and prescription drug coverage from their benefit plans to save money.

        They will make billions and the government programs will cost billions more than estimated/budgeted as more people join the government plan after losing third party coverage.

  3. Matt says:

    Interesting statement from Wynne in the article:

    “I welcome a number of the ideas brought forward by the NDP today, especially those to help seniors, and support our healthcare system,” Wynne said in a statement following Horwath’s speech.
    “Our approach is a sharp contrast with what Doug Ford and the Conservatives are proposing with billions in cuts to health care and education to fund their platform.”

    “OUR approach……”

    Does she mean our as in the Libs, or our as in the Libs and NDP?

    Already working on a Lib/NDP coalition arrangement to take power should the PC’s win a minority or to keep Wynne in power in the Libs win a minority?

  4. Phil says:

    As for “Ontario Benefits,” it sounds as if this will supposedly exist outside of OHIP, but if elected, will Horwath be prepared in case there’s resistance from the ODA about this?

    I already have an image of Horwath having this ring through her head, ad nauseam: “ODA! Dental plan! ODA! Dental plan!”

    • Gary says:

      This Ontario Benefits thing specifically says every *working* person, and then seems to have a slightly separate version of seniors.

      It’s curious this actually sounds like a great way to gradually bring single-payer health and the like to the US. Generally most employers already have various benefits you can choose from. I imagine that Ontario Benefits would be structured like that, as an option for your Dental Insurance (since it sounds like she is modelling it more after existing private dental insurance) but where you could potentially choose between the $0 premium (fully government paid) Ontario Benefits plan or potentially some other option provided by your employer that gives some sort of addition.

      The separate part for seniors also seems already made for integration with things like the Trillium benefits, Ontario Works, etc. in Ontario. Or as an analog here in the US the Medicare and Medicaid would already have seniors and low income and disabled covered (for health insurance) and this would be a way of expanding ACA-esque coverage to all individuals — but for dental.

      Name also keeps it open for incorporating Pharmacare if things don’t quite pan out, restoring proper vision coverage and alternatively if someone wanted to really go on the right wing path creating two-tier healthcare by converting OHIP to an Ontario Benefits program.

  5. Miles Lunn says:

    Agreed Howarth can win, although I think her biggest weakness is the cost of her plans. Buying back Hydro One will cost billions and even if most disagree it should have never been privatized it is done. Perhaps buying back enough shares so the government owns over 50% makes more sense as its ownership is just under 50% so that wouldn’t cost too much. Will be interesting off course how this plays out. Also higher corporate tax rate may sound popular but worse timing as the US just cut theirs. That being said Howarth has more potential for growth than Wynne does thus I think her chance of becoming premier is higher than Wynne being re-elected, but Ford is still the favourite (I say that as a conservative who strongly dislikes Ford), but far from certain.

  6. Pedro says:

    Seems like a substantial portion of Ontarians are aware that, while this would be just grand (prob’ly tens of thousands of grands, actually) we can’t really afford it right now. But, wait a coupla decades and, if Ontario has some spending power, the Liberals or Progressive Conservatives will put it in their platforms, thanks very much Andrea.

    • Ronald O'Dowd says:


      So glad to welcome you to my world of distinct possibilities.
      There are more Progressives in Ontario than Conservatives. Their task is strategic voting to keep Ford out. That can only be accomplished by kicking Liberals to the curb and voting NDP. Like the commercial says it tastes awful, for some, but it works. So, get on with it Ontario! I can’t do it for you.

    • doconnor says:

      Most of these things are things that people are paying for already, though various complex and inefficient plans.

      • Pedro says:

        That’s funny! Let’s combine all those “inefficient” plans that have made millions for dentists for twice annual cleanings and give them to the government to handle oh so much MORE efficiently. “We are from the government and we are here to help you.” I refer you to Warren’s link to a story of the message left on a government voice mail about concerns over a bridge that shortly after collapsed killing some of those helped people.

  7. Matt says:

    According to DART Insights and Communications, the NDP still have 73 ridings without a nominated candidate, 30 of them in the GTA.

    I know they’ve still got time, but that just seemes they are wasting an opportunity to get candidates out knocking on doors, shaking hands and kissing babies.

    OPC have 95 nominated, still need 29 overall, 11 in the GTA

    Liberals have 80 nominated, still need 44 overall, 13 in the GTA.

    NDP have 51 nominated, still need 73 overall, 30 in the GTA.


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