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The Speaker Sides with Harpers' Cons

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Published on May 7, 2012

The Speaker of the House (Andrew Scheer) determined today that Harpers' Cons did not know about the actual cost of the attack jets that Harper has been hell-bent on purchasing and therefore they had not knowingly deceived the House. If Harpers' Cons had been determined to have lied to the House this would have meant another charge of Contempt of Parliament.

Scheer's reasons for determining Harpers' Cons to be innocent: 1. The Auditor General had stated in his report that that the Cons did not know all of the expenses entailed and 2. Because the Cons agreed with the Auditor General's findings.

So the conclusion here: Harper's Cons did not realize that the jets would need engines, or that long term costs would include the fuel to run them or require crews to man them.

The Harper Government had maintained that the jets would cost up to 75 million per jet, yet Winslow Wheeler (of the Centre for Defense Information in Washington) stated that the unit cost of the F-35 jet will be about $148 million per airplane, in line with the budget officer's report. And yet the Cons repeatedly attacked the budget officer's estimate.

The auditor general's own report showed that the Defense Department (Peter McKay) had internal estimates that 65 F-35 jets would cost $25 billion over 20 years, but would only admit to a cost of $14.7 billion. (See the bottom link for more.)


Sources/links:

Harpers' Cons were found in Contempt of Parliament when he had a minority government for refusing to deliver financial information regarding the fighter jets and corporate tax cuts
http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/po...

C-Pac
http://www.cpac.ca/forms/index.asp?ds...

U.S. expert says jets will cost double Tory estimates
http://www.ctv.ca/CTVNews/TopStories/...

Budget officer grilled for 'assumptions' on F-35 costs
http://www.torontosun.com/2012/05/03/...

F-35 costs had 'significant things missing'
http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/story...

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