As the NDP recently pointed out in the above video, during the 2009 election Stephen McNeil said taking the provincial tax off household electricity was “a piece of bad, bad public policy.”
During the spring session of the 2012 legislature, McNeil and the Liberals voted against the NDP law that reduces the HST to 14% in 2014 and to 13% in 2015.
Liberal positions typically blow with the wind, depending on the topic, but it will be difficult for McNeil to avoid getting pinned down on income and sales tax issues. Why? Because he has repeatedly said that any move on taxes must only come after “a comprehensive tax review”.
The Finance Department knows this is a silly talking point. They look closely at taxation issues when creating each and every budget. In 2012 they increased the NDP’s Affordable Living Tax Credit, and decreased the small business tax. But McNeil has made the vague “comprehensive tax review” his mantra. He does not understand the budget process.
McNeil’s lack of credibility on economics leaves room for both Jamie Baillie’s Conservatives and Darrell Dexter’s NDP. For example, should McNeil promise any tax relief in his election platform, he’ll be reminded of both his opinion research on whether Nova Scotians would accept postponing a balanced budget for five years, and of his votes in the Legislature.