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Manitoba’s Opposition NDP Blocks Province from Introducing Budget

March 11, 2020 3:36 PM | News

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Wab Kinew

Manitoba NDP Leader Wab Kinew speaks with media in Winnipeg’s west end, Monday, Sept. 9, 2019. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods)

Scott Fielding

Manitoba Finance Minister Scott Fielding speaks to media at a press conference before the provincial budget is read at the Manitoba Legislature in Winnipeg, Wednesday, March 11, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods)

WINNIPEG — Manitoba’s opposition NDP has prevented the Pallister government from introducing its new budget, saying it includes harmful legislation.

The budget was set to be released on Wednesday, but has been stalled in the House by “procedural tactics” set out by the NDP.

“We were elected to do a job — stand up to Brian Pallister and stop his plan to hurt families and front line workers,” NDP leader Wab Kinew said.

“Today, and every day until the legislative deadline has passed, we will do everything possible to prevent the Pallister government from ramming through their harmful legislation.”

The NDP said while the government is delayed in introducing the budget, it can still table the budget’s documents before the House and have them pass at the same time it always would.

Premier Brian Pallister was not pleased.

“I think the level of disrespect for the people of Manitoba was put on display today, and I think it’s disappointing,” Pallister said.

“The NDP’s delay tactics show that their priority is attention-seeking behaviour, not the priorities of the people of Manitoba.”

WATCH: (courtesy: Government of Manitoba)

Pallister said the delay will keep him in Winnipeg instead of travelling to meet with other premiers and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

“I have to miss a meeting with the prime minister and my colleagues as a consequence of this and that’s OK. My priority is here in Manitoba and that’s where I am going to be.”

Media and interest groups were provided with the contents of the budget earlier in the day, but are not allowed to reveal it until the document is presented in the chamber.

Manitoba government statement:

The official Opposition have indicated its intent to prevent the budget and budget speech from being considered by the Manitoba legislative assembly as scheduled this afternoon. This is an abuse of parliamentary privilege and is very disrespectful to the guests and media who have come to the legislature for the presentation of Budget 2020.

In the event that the budget and budget speech are not able to be considered by the legislative assembly on Wednesday, March 11, it will be the government’s intention to bring it forward for consideration in the legislature on Thursday, March 12.

— With files from The Canadian Press


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