Conservative carbon tax exemption motion dependent on NDP support
Conservative carbon tax exemption motion dependent on NDP support

Conservatives are set to push for a motion calling on the federal government to halt the federal carbon tax on all types of home heating until the next election.

In line with this initiative, during a Wednesday morning caucus address, Conservative leader Pierre Poilievre called for a “carbon tax election,” tapping into the public’s growing concerns over the cost of living.

Poilievre introduced the motion on Tuesday but voting will not take place until Monday.

“That, given the government has announced a ‘temporary, three-year pause’ to the federal carbon tax on home heating oil, the House call on the government to end that pause to all forms of heating,” reads the motion.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has refused to budge on the issue, rejecting any further carve-outs or exemptions on the carbon tax. Despite this, provincial premiers and parties are ramping up the pressure. 

The Premier of British Columbia, David Eby, said it’s unfair that Atlantic Canada is being targeted for federal relief on heating bills that won’t apply to British Columbia. 

British Columbia, Quebec, and the Northwest Territories are excluded because they collect their own fuel tax.

Alberta Premier Danielle Smith and Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe are calling on Ottawa to apply the same exemption to natural gas, the main heating used by residents in their provinces. 

Manitoba’s new NDP finance minister called for “greater fairness” in applying the federal carbon tax. 

For Poilievre’s motion to pass, it would have to receive support from the NDP in the House of Commons.

Numerous votes to cancel the carbon tax or stop it from increasing have been brought forward in the past but they have all failed.

In these votes, the majority of Liberal and NDP MPs have voted against the motions. 

Jagmeet Singh, leader of the NDP, was recently questioned about the cost of living for Canadians and the carbon tax. He criticized the Liberal government’s plan for specific carve-outs, labelling the plan as being divisive.

Singh has since presented a plan to waive the GST on all heating for Canadians.

He also proposed a program to help Canadians upgrade their insulation, install better windows, and install heat pumps. He said this program could be funded by implementing a windfall tax on oil and gas companies, which he claimed are making record profits.

With the Conservative motion scheduled for a vote on Monday, the NDP’s decision will prove pivotal. 

When announcing the motion, Poilievre questioned what Jagmeet Singh would do.  

“What will Jagmeet Singh do? Will Jagmeet Singh stand with provincial NDPers? Will he stand with the voters, who put their trust in his MPs in places like Timmins and other cold Northern communities, or will he once again sell out working-class Canadians in order to suck up to Justin Trudeau? That will be his decision,” Poilievre said.

According to Global News, the NDP has since indicated it will support the Conservative motion to expand carbon tax exemptions to all home heating.

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