rabble blogs are the personal pages of some of Canada's most insightful progressive activists and commentators. All opinions belong to the writer; however, writers are expected to adhere to our guidelines. We welcome new bloggers -- contact us for details.

Prentice PCs' flip-flop on charity tax credit cut shows early-election justification was pure baloney

Please chip in to support rabble's election 2019 coverage. Support rabble.ca today for as little as $1 per month!

Have I got this right? Jim Prentice, who had to have an early election that nobody else wanted to get a mandate for his supposedly transformative budget, is now busy transforming said budget because of things he's heard on the campaign trail? Seriously?http://bit.ly/1Hg9hLS

This just in: Prentice's PC Party has flip-flopped on its budget provision cutting the charitable tax donation credit while leaving the political tax donation credit intact.

Prentice, said his party's press release, "has reconsidered the reduction to the charitable donation tax credit in the budget, and a PC government will maintain the previous rate."

On its own, this is probably not a bad idea. But if it doesn't tell you our Progressive Conservative Premier is hearing the same things from his high-quality professional polling that the rest of us are getting from the flaky demon-dialler and online panel polls that are being given away to the media, I don't know what the heck will!

As a commenter on yesterday morning's AlbertaPolitics.ca post said, "the wild twists, the daily changing of the message, wildly firing away at different targets on all sides" all suggest Mr. Prentice and his PCs realize "they are in a fight for their lives."

"I've said during this campaign that leadership is about difficult and sometimes unpopular choices," Mr. Prentice tried to explain in his press release. Really, we're not making this up!

"But hearing from Albertans during this campaign, it's become clear that the choice was more than simply unpopular. Rather, Albertans have told me it was seen as contrary to our values as Albertans," the press release rambled on.

Just asking, but why is Prentice even our premier, not to mention running for a big radical mandate, if he doesn't understand our values as Albertans? Too long in Ottawa?

The premier's press release then tried to blow off this morning's sudden change of course as "a small change, but an important one" -- an effort that is fair to describe as sucking and blowing at the same time.

It's more significant than small, though, because it shows the PC Party's desperate desire to go against the overwhelming will of Albertans and seek an immediate mandate for "fiscal discipline," "a realistic plan," "unpopular choices" -- all phrases pulled from this morning's press release -- was pure baloney.

Anyway, it sure appears as if it was all about the strategy cooked up by his high-priced strategists, who by the sound of it aren't actually all that good. They make it seem as if the PCs aren't done yet with the flip-floppy ways of Alison Redford and Ed Stelmach, the premier's two predecessors in his job.

As Dean Bennett of the Canadian Press asked in a Tweet yesterday, "when @JimPrentice says running on budget, q now is which budget: orig budget, amended budget or budget that could be changed after #abvote"?

Good question. One can only hope that this means the budget it still open on issues that really count, like adequate funding for health care and public education.

As for needing an election right now, it's too late to get the premier to change his mind about that -- although you have to wonder if he wishes he could!

This post also appears on David Climenhaga's blog, AlbertaPolitics.ca.

Thank you for reading this story…

More people are reading rabble.ca than ever and unlike many news organizations, we have never put up a paywall – at rabble we’ve always believed in making our reporting and analysis free to all, while striving to make it sustainable as well. Media isn’t free to produce. rabble’s total budget is likely less than what big corporate media spend on photocopying (we kid you not!) and we do not have any major foundation, sponsor or angel investor. Our main supporters are people and organizations -- like you. This is why we need your help. You are what keep us sustainable.

rabble.ca has staked its existence on you. We live or die on community support -- your support! We get hundreds of thousands of visitors and we believe in them. We believe in you. We believe people will put in what they can for the greater good. We call that sustainable.

So what is the easy answer for us? Depend on a community of visitors who care passionately about media that amplifies the voices of people struggling for change and justice. It really is that simple. When the people who visit rabble care enough to contribute a bit then it works for everyone.

And so we’re asking you if you could make a donation, right now, to help us carry forward on our mission. Make a donation today.


We welcome your comments! rabble.ca embraces a pro-human rights, pro-feminist, anti-racist, queer-positive, anti-imperialist and pro-labour stance, and encourages discussions which develop progressive thought. Our full comment policy can be found here. Learn more about Disqus on rabble.ca and your privacy here. Please keep in mind:


  • Tell the truth and avoid rumours.
  • Add context and background.
  • Report typos and logical fallacies.
  • Be respectful.
  • Respect copyright - link to articles.
  • Stay focused. Bring in-depth commentary to our discussion forum, babble.


  • Use oppressive/offensive language.
  • Libel or defame.
  • Bully or troll.
  • Post spam.
  • Engage trolls. Flag suspect activity instead.