(OTTAWA) Pierre Poilievre’s attacks on the Bank of Canada and his promise to oust the central bank governor if he is elected are damaging the credibility of Conservatives, according to his own party.
Posted at 11:43 am
Updated at 6:17 pm
“I think we’re losing credibility,” financial critic Ed Fast said in a scrum entering the party’s caucus on Wednesday.
Mr. Fast, who made sure not to speak on the issue as co-chair of Jean Charest’s campaign, but “as a spokesman for finance”, also said he was “deeply disturbed” by the fact that the leadership candidate was ready to “interfere” with the “essential” independence of one of the country’s major financial institutions.
“The central bank has served us well, though not perfectly, in recent years, but has served us well in controlling inflation,” he said. Central banks around the world have struggled with the same challenges as our central bank and I don’t think it is wise to attack the central bank governor when the real problem is government borrowing and federal spending. »
Last week, during the first official leadership debate, Pierre Poilievre, who is considered the leader, caused a stir by announcing that he would fire Governor Tiff Macklem because the country’s inflation rate is reaching height not seen in decades.
Again on Wednesday, Statistics Canada announced that its consumer price index continued to rise in April, with inflation rising by 6.8% compared to a year ago. This is the strongest inflation since January 1991, when it was 6.9%.
Mr. Poilievre also held a press conference outside the Bank of Canada building in Ottawa in recent weeks, where he denounced the institution’s “so -called experts” that he also considered himself “financial who cannot read “.
In a written statement sent to The Canadian Press, Pierre Poilievre reiterated that the Governor of the Bank of Canada had “failed” in his “mission” to keep inflation at 2%.
“He preferred to print money for Trudeau’s expenses,” Mr. Poilievre wrote.
The candidate also attacked Mr. Fast by emphasizing extensive blows to the fact he also militate for the Charest camp.
“Ed Fast and Jean Charest have no problem firing a waitress or a welder because they are not doing their job. But they won’t do the same for a big banker whose failures cost Canadians, ”he added.
The Conservative Party still did not respond early in the evening to a request from The Canadian Press made earlier in the day to clarify whether Ed Fast was indeed speaking on behalf of the party as he claimed.
The fire of action
Anxiety seems to be felt even in the ranks of candidate Poilievre.
Ontario MP Marilyn Gladu, who supports her and leads her campaign in Ontario, declined to comment on whether showing Governor Macklem the door was a good idea, mentioning only that “in the heat of the moment, everyone is have ideas “.
Is he worried that an important person in the party could damage the credibility of the political formation?
“No. I don’t think so, he replies. In fact, the more excited and annoyed the liberal media is about Pierre Poilievre, the more I know they are worried that he has won.»
Pierre Poilievre’s comments prompted Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to defend the independence of the Bank of Canada the next day.
The institution is “highly known around the world”, he asserted, praising its “rigor”, its “professionalism” and its “independence from political schemes”.
MNA Gérard Deltell, who is a critic for innovation, science and industry and also a supporter of Jean Charest, was immediately reiterated in French after “we must be careful when directly attacking institutions” and reminded that “the name of our the protagonist is Justin Trudeau “.
“We should also keep in mind that the Bank of Canada is an independent institution and that it should have its leeway, which is not perfect. We recognize that there has been too much done about it. That being said, does it deserve the ultimate sanction ? This is not an opinion I share. »
In recent weeks, Mr. Poilievre has also regarded cryptocurrencies as a “cure for inflation”, which has led to him being called “irresponsible” by former Quebec Premier Jean Charest. , one of his career opponents.