The Doug Ford PCs Have Become Little More Than A Bloated Liberal Political Machine

Written By Wyatt Claypool, Posted on May 23, 2022

People don’t use the term “political machine” much these days. Political machines are more of a concept associated with late 19th century to mid-20th-century American politics where certain political jurisdictions were heavily controlled by a conglomerate of influential political actors who could enrich themselves by controlling voting blocks. 

Although Ontario Premier Doug Ford’s Progressive Conservative Party does not have the sort of direct control over blocks of voters the way someone like Senator Roscoe Conkling in 1870s New York would have had, the PCs in their own way have come to exist only to control public office.

It was disturbing for Ford, who supposedly is a Conservative, to be bragging during the last Ontario leaders debate that he has many of the major labour unions on his side, seeing as Ford only got their endorsements by pledging further government subsidization of their industries and wages.   

The PCs are not offering any tax relief in the 2022 election and failed to deliver any of the relief they promised back in 2018. Instead, like the Liberals and NDP, the PCs are now willing to just buy votes with promises of expensive new government programs, infrastructure projects, and subsidies to industries rich with potential PC voters. 

The PCs are also offering media handouts like Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberals. Ford granted the failing Toronto Star, an online gambling Licence worth $500 million which the profits from will go towards fueling their increasingly unreadable left-wing journalism. A deal like that appears to be little more than a way for Doug Ford to buy better coverage from an outlet that has been a strong opponent for his family for over a decade.

(Below is a great interview from Rebel News with New Blue Party leader Jim Karahalios about the $500 million Toronto Star gambling licence giveaway.)

And the fact that instead of scrapping the per-vote taxpayer subsidy of elected politicians’ Electoral District Associations, the PCs doubled them, makes it easy to see that the PCs have become a political machine whose only goal is to win elections.

Ford’s PC seem to be deliberately targeting a different set of voters in the 2022 election than they did during the 2018 election who will hold them to lower fiscal, and ethical standards. Ford’s strategy seems to be to buy votes the same way the Liberals and NDP do while staying ever so slightly to the political right of those parties in order to try and pressure more conservative-minded voters to stay with the party or risk having Steven Del Duca or Adrewa Horwath become Ontario premier.

Already multiple journalists, including conservative commentators, have noticed Doug Ford trying to court federal Liberal voters to the PC Party. 

This explains why Ford mostly stayed out of the way of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau during the 2021 federal election and supported Trudeau’s invocation of the Emergencies Act to break up the peaceful Freedom Convoy protest in Ottawa back in February. Not only has Ford made an informal ally of Trudeau, Ford seems to want to emulate Trudeau’s political style.

What would be particularly gross is if Ford and the PCs go unopposed for completely backtracking on every principled stand they pretended to make.

One piece of silver lining to the 2022 provincial election is that it looks like New Blue Party MPP Belinda Karahalios in Cambridge can be reelected under her new party banner, and may be joined in Queens Park by a couple of other New Blue MPPs.

The PCs are currently trying to oppose MPP Karahalios reelected by further exposing the fact they are not remotely conservative anymore by appointing a candidate to run against her who is a still pandemic-paranoid climate alarmist. 

If New Blue can get a foothold this election with either one or more elected MPPs or a significant percentage of the vote, it will ensure there is a new home for the large portion of conservative Ontarians alienated by Doug Ford’s increasingly liberal Progressive “Conservative” political machine.

Clearly simply enabling Ford’s political machine is not going to fix an of the issues Ontario is currently dealing with, it will only deepen them.

Wyatt Claypool

Wyatt is a student at Mount Royal University, where he is the president of its Campus Conservative club. In his writing, he focuses on covering provincial and federal politics, firearms regulation, and the energy sector. Wyatt has also previously written for The Post Millennial.

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