Two more Conservative politicians in Canada are working to turn carbon pricing into a winning ballot issue.
In Halifax last week for the Conservative Party of Canada convention, federal Opposition leader Andrew Scheer promised his first move if he ever became prime minister would be to repeal the federal floor tax on carbon.
“The carbon tax isn’t just bad for big business,” he claimed. “It’s bad for absolutely everyone.”
In New Brunswick, meanwhile, Conservative leader Blaine Higgs is trying to make carbon pricing the defining issue in the provincial election taking place September 24.
“I think this election is going to be a referendum on carbon tax,” he said. “We are saying we are taxed enough. We are not going to be putting this on, we’re going to stop this carbon tax debate, and we’re going to work with other provinces to see that it doesn’t happen.”
Higgs “said he’ll refund any carbon tax levied on consumers by Ottawa, by using federal funding to bring in equivalent tax cuts under provincial control,” The Canadian Press reports. Strictly speaking, that position amounts to an assent to a federal pricing strategy that puts a price on carbon pollution, but doesn’t preclude refunding the dollars directly to consumers by some other pathway.
Legal analysis to date indicates that Saskatchewan and now Ontario are unlikely to succeed in their efforts to have the federal floor price on carbon struck down in court.