People’s Party of Canada Leader Maxime Bernier, in Halifax for a party rally Friday night, says his party will be able to field candidates in every riding in the next federal election.
The party, which was granted official status Thursday, was formed after Bernier left the federal Conservatives last year after finishing second in the party’s leadership race to Andrew Scheer.
Bernier spoke with CBC’s Amy Smith on a range of topics, from his plan to get rid of ACOA to equalization payments. The conversation has been edited and condensed for clarity.
What do you think the appetite is for your plan, what you’re offering?
I think people appreciate what they are seeing, so for us, you know, we are speaking about what is important for Canadians and we are speaking about bold reform that needs to be done in this country. So, for example, I was in … Saskatoon and Regina to speak about the equalization, saying that we must be less generous. We must change the equalization.
You call that a poverty trap?
Yeah, it’s a poverty trap. My own province in Quebec received equalization money for the last 50 years, so there is no incentive to change at the provincial level … But the other leaders, they don’t want to speak about that. They are afraid to speak about that, but for us, it’s so important and that’s why I’m doing this tour in Western Canada and Eastern Canada.
You also want to scrap ACOA, why is that?
Because corporate welfare is not working [by] giving subsidies to small, medium and big businesses … All these agencies that are giving subsidies, we don’t need that. We need to save the money and lower taxes to corporations at 10 per cent. That’s the best policies for our country.