The town hall meeting Thursday in Regina with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau had a strong Estevan presence.
Jason LeBlanc was in the front row and able to ask a question of the Trudeau, who has been under fire for pipelines and the carbon tax locally. While he found out later that it’s unlikely any questions would be taken by those in the front row, he was still able to interject a question as Trudeau walked near him.
“The question I posed was about why we have a carbon tax when Justin Trudeau himself has told us it’s a global problem,” LeBlanc said. “My question was that the country of China is not even close to being at our level of pollutant and yet they’re not being charged a carbon tax. Why are we expected to pay a carbon tax when we’re only 1.7 per cent of the problem?”
LeBlanc said the question’s answer got twisted into something about the price on pollution.
“That was not my question, so he has the ability to change things around like that,” said LeBlanc.
The second part of LeBlanc’s question was about what he planned to do with the tax money.
“And then he went into that by saying every person will receive two hundred dollars more than you have in your bank account more,” LeBlanc said. “So that just amazes me that we’re all going to get $200 more, and who’s not going to get the $200. He said it’s not going to be charged to corporates, it’s not going to be charged to farms... who’s going to pay the tax. we’re all going to be getting $200.”
LeBlanc said that what Trudeau failed to mention is that this is just the first year and that in five years, the price will keep going higher and higher.
“It’s working in these favour, these town hall meetings, because he’s twisting these questions,” said LeBlanc.
LeBlanc doesn’t feel the questions Trudeau faced from those in the energy industry at the Regina town hall will make much of a difference.
“There will not be any changes made under this government,” LeBlanc said.
LeBlanc said there were too many people there who were fans – not Trudeau supporters – and who were there to see the prime minister.
It’s not hard to get into these events, LeBlanc said, and it may be different if there were a few hundred people in attendance. With all that said, LeBlanc still respected those facing tough questions in public.
“It was a great experience and I commend all politicians. I have a lot more respect for them now to sit there and take heckling and abuse and stay focused because it happened to me when I was there,” LeBlanc said. “There were a lot of people heckling me when I was talking.”