Kellie Leitch’s proposal for values testing of immigrants is clearly popular with the public—75% want it. I hope that, whoever wins the Tory leadership, they take it on. It’s not just a good idea. It is a vote-getter.
I hope they also take on Maxime Bernier’s plan to end “supply management.” It is a cruelty to the poor. Sure, it is a great deal for a few farmers. But it probably hurts more farmers than it helps. It also complicates any free trade negotiations with other countries. It ought to be a vote winner too: everyone will notice a drop in the price of eggs and milk. At no cost to government.
And I like Erin O’Toole’s support of free trade, free movement, and coordinated security among Canada, the UK, Australia and New Zealand. Nobody will likely care one way or the other in Quebec, but in the ROC, it ought to be attractive for lessening our unilateral dependence on the US. It will open up opportunities for Canadians, and attract desirable immigrants to Canada.
I also hope that whomever is chosen takes up Hugh Segal’s Guaranteed Minimum Income concept. Besides being a sensible idea, it would do a lot to counter left-wing claims that the Tories are only for “the rich.” And we must do something to respond to the current crisis of the North American working class. People are dying. Properly done, if we can count on it being properly done, it might not cost more than what we are doing now. Money now going to bureaucrats would simply go directly to the poor.
Last up, the Canadian Conservatives should embrace Trump’s idea that any new regulation must come with the elimination of two old ones. For one thing, it is a promise that would cost nothing in tax dollars. For another, of course, it would actually lessen the costs of government. For a third, it would encourage business formation, and so boost the economy. What could be better? Sliced bread?
There are lots more things that should be done, but these ideas seem to be out there now, and, together, look to me like a winning platform in the next election. And one that could unite all the strands of the party behind it: libertarians with the end of supply management and cutting regulations, Red Tories with the GAI proposal, traditionalists with CANZUK, Trump-types with the immigrant vetting.