“The Ontario government should not be for sale,” says Stacey Leadbetter, running for the GPO in the Whitby-Oshawa by-election. “It’s time to end corporate and union donations to political parties.”
The GPO continues to call for a provincial ban on corporate and union donations to political parties as a way to reduce the shady influence of money in politics. The federal government and other provinces ban such donations.
“Is the government making decisions based on the public interest – or on party fundraising goals?” asks GPO leader Mike Schreiner. “I was appalled to learn that Liberal cabinet ministers have fundraising targets.”
The Toronto Star recently reported that Bruce Power, which signed a multi-billion dollar deal to rebuild the Bruce Nuclear Station, hosted a $100,000 private dinner for Premier Wynne and Energy Minister Bob Chiarelli.
“The Liberals are making energy decisions that Ontario can’t afford,” continues Schreiner, “and they’re doing it behind closed doors at fundraising dinners where the nuclear industry pours money into Liberal coffers. Does this explain why the Liberals refuse to conduct a public review of nuclear costs or emergency plans?”
Currently, an Ontario corporation or union is allowed to contribute up to $9,975 per year to a central party organization, plus $6,650 between 5 riding associations or candidates— more in election years. All three parties at Queen’s Park profit from corporate and union donations, raising concerns that special interests trump the public good at Queen’s Park.
“I will put the people of Whitby-Oshawa first by fighting to take corporate and union money out of politics,” says Leadbetter. “The Liberals, PC and NDP should be ashamed of their reliance on money from corporate and union donations.”
The GPO is on a mission to bring honesty, integrity and good public policy to Queen’s Park.