February 18, 2006

IN AMERICAN THAT'S JOE REPUBLICAN:

Tory supports private role in public system (ROB FERGUSON AND RICHARD BRENNAN, 2/18/06, Toronto Star)

Ontario can expect more private specialty hospitals like the Shouldice clinic for hernia treatment if Progressive Conservatives win the next election, leader John Tory said yesterday as he kicked off a party policy conference. [...]

The weekend Progressive Conservative conference is a defining moment in Tory's leadership as he gets the party ready for the Oct. 4, 2007 election. Tory has begun talking about the importance of people taking charge of their own lives instead of relying on Queen's Park.

"The government has a very important role to play but people still have to take more responsibility for every aspect of their own life, especially if those people don't want to pay ever-higher taxes," he said, adding this would be a theme of his speech to the 1,000 delegates tonight.

"The notion that we should expect the government to do everything for everybody ... is not realistic," he said.

One policy that is not up for debate, Tory told reporters, is his decision to scrap the controversial Liberal health tax, which costs up to $900 per person per year and raises $2.6 billion annually.

"I think it is important that we should get rid of that health tax," he said, adding that it would be phased out over the term of the government rather than all at once.

Posted by Orrin Judd at February 18, 2006 8:06 AM
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