“We will not accept a charity handout.” Those are the words Alberta’s Environment and Parks Minister said to reporters just a few months ago. Jason Nixon made it clear his United Conservative Party (UCP) government did not want, in his words, “a Justin Trudeau handout” from Ottawa.

Over the weekend, however, the Alberta UCP revealed that it was applying for the federal emergency wage subsidy program. This move would see Ottawa pay for up to 75 percent of UCP staffers’ wages.

The UCP is not the only Conservative political party that is momentarily overlooking their commitment to “free-enterprise” and disdain for government “handouts.”

The federal Conservative party has also confirmed that it will be receiving the wage subsidy. The same party that fought hard to limit government aid to students and called for reductions to the CERB, is now using federal aid programs to pay their staff.

It’s no secret that Conservatives are opposed to big government. This past election, Scheer ran on a platform of deep cuts to government programs, much like the agenda of his predecessor Stephen Harper.

Scheer’s Conservatives have also been critical of the federal government’s spending on emergency programs during the COVID-19 crisis. Just this week, a Conservative MP tweeted out a cartoon which depicted the federal spending as wasteful.  


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