Canada PM Trudeau survives confidence vote as opposition party backs budget
Justin Trudeau’s government survived a confidence vote, avoiding an election for now, as its first budget in two years passed in Canada’s legislature with the support of a left-leaning opposition party.
In a Monday evening vote, lawmakers from the New Democratic Party backed Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland’s plan to help the Canadian economy recover from its pandemic-induced losses. The vote in the House of Commons was 178 to 157 in favor.
In her first fiscal plan as finance chief, Freeland’s budget outlines almost C$500 billion ($403 billion) in spending with a return to small deficits by 2025. It also earmarks C$101 billion for new programs over a three-year period.
The centerpiece of the budget is C$30 billion over five years to establish a national childcare strategy, with the goal of offering daycare spaces at C$10 a day.
The budget’s approval means Canadians likely won’t be going to the polls this spring, though Trudeau may try to force an election at some point this year in a bid to regain the majority his Liberal Party lost in 2019. The prime minister has promised that all adult Canadians who want a Covid-19 vaccine will be able to get one by September.