Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre’s motion to extend the carbon tax exemption to all forms of home heating was defeated in the House of Commons on Monday, despite unexpected support from the NDP.
The motion, which aimed to end the government’s announced “temporary, three-year pause” on the federal carbon tax for home heating oil, failed to secure enough votes for passage. The final vote count had 186 MPs opposed and 135 in support.
The motion read: “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.”
It wouldn’t have been binding on the federal government.
In a surprising turn of events last week, the NDP announced it would side with the Conservatives by supporting the motion. However, Liberal and Bloc Quebecois MPs voted against it, ultimately leading to its defeat.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has remained resolute in his opposition to further exemptions on the carbon tax, emphasizing the government’s commitment to combating climate change.
Trudeau argued that expanding exemptions would hinder the nation’s progress in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, though critics have accused him of pandering politically to Atlantic Canada – a Liberal stronghold.
Despite the motion’s failure, the issue remains a problem for the Trudeau government, with pressure growing from provincial and territorial premiers.
On the same day as the vote, provincial and territorial leaders gathered in Halifax to address growing concerns regarding the federal government’s selective approach to the carbon tax.
The leaders issued a unanimous call for fairness in ensuring that all provinces are treated equitably.
“All this is doing is causing unfairness, making life unaffordable, and really harming the most vulnerable going into the winter season,” Alberta Premier Danielle Smith said at a press conference on Monday.
Taking to X (formerly Twitter), Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe criticized the Liberal government’s stance on the issue. Moe suggested that the motion’s defeat harmed the unity of Canada.
“The motion to extend the home heating exemption and carbon tax fairness to all Canadians was defeated because the Liberal government was supported by the Bloc Québécois – a party that wants to break up Canada. That explains a lot about the state of our country under Trudeau,” said Moe.