Five finance executives who don’t skimp on spending


In order to compare apples to apples, I am going to compare the financial frameworks of the various parties, taking strictly into account the surplus or the deficit before the payment of money to the Generations Fund and the use of the stabilization reserve.

For the five fiscal years from 2022-2023 to 2026-2027, the Department of Finance’s pre-election report projects a cumulative surplus of $13.7 billion. This surplus includes a financial provision of $10 billion to deal with economic contingencies.

Following the panoply of promises made during the current election campaign, here is the « state » of Quebec’s public finances, according to the budget forecasts presented in each party’s financial framework.


With the Coalition Avenir Québec, another Legault government would accumulate, following the entry into force of its new promises, a cumulative deficit of $10 billion for the five fiscal years.

Note: this cumulative deficit includes a financial provision of only 8 billion instead of 10 billion as in the pre-election report.

This means that the bill for the CAQ’s new election promises amounts to approximately $25.7 billion.

Although, according to the polls, his chances of staying in power are very high, François Legault has sacrificed a balanced budget in favor of his electoral promises.

His main giveaways to voters for the five fiscal years include a total personal tax cut of $7.4 billion; one-time assistance this year of $3.5 billion for people earning less than $100,000; a freeze on government rates at 3% ($2.16 billion), an additional amount of support for seniors ($7.9 billion).


Screenshot, TVA Nouvelles

On the side of the Liberal Party of Quebec, their panoply of electoral promises would lead to a future government of Dominique Anglade in the red even darker than that of François Legault.

Taking into account the same calculation basis as the CAQ (including a provision of $8 billion over 5 years and COVID-19 expenditures of $2.8 billion for the current year), I calculated that a government Anglade would end the five fiscal years with a cumulative deficit of $13.95 billion.

The net cost of Liberal promises would amount to some $31 billion.

The Liberal leader’s flagship promises are the $12 billion tax cut and the $10 billion seniors’ allowance.

To mop up the Liberal promises, the “super-rich” – with an additional tax grab of $1.4 billion –, financial institutions (+ $1.75 billion), tax haven enthusiasts (+ 3.4 billion) and undeclared workers (+ 2 billion).


With its financial framework for “Le Québec qui s’assume. For real.”, the Parti Québécois, at the end of the five fiscal years, would show a cumulative budget deficit of around $2.5 billion. To calculate this PQ deficit, I applied the same amount of provision for risks as for the CAQ and the Liberal Party.

The net bill for the commitments announced by Paul St-Pierre Plamondon is around $17.4 billion.

The PQ notably stands out from the other parties with its one-time purchasing power allowance of $1,200, which it promises to pay during the current fiscal year of 2022-2023 to people earning an income of $50,000 or less. This allowance drops to $750 for people whose income fluctuates between $50,000 and $80,000.

In terms of additional income that the PQ government intends to seek, are targeted, among others, the members of the select GAFAM club (+ $1.8 billion), doctors by ending the incorporation (+ 1.1 billion), and financial institutions (+$1.6 billion).


Québec solidaire distinguishes itself from its adversaries by opting for “a new vision of public finances”, which the party of Nadeau-Dubois describes with the words “rigour and ambition”.

One thing is certain, the ambition is great since Québec solidaire plans to complete the four fiscal years of the new mandate with a cumulative surplus of $1 billion.

The party of Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois is “revolutionizing” the budget forecasts of the pre-election report of the Ministry of Finance by planning new expenditures, for a total sum of $37.7 billion.

To finance these electoral commitments, the Solidaires are introducing new sources of financing of $37.2 billion.

The “wealthy” who hold net assets of more than $1 million will pass through the wringer of a future government of Québec solidaire. They alone would suffer an additional tax bite of $10 billion.

Companies would also switch to cash, while Quebec solidaire plans to extract an additional $14 billion from them in tax revenue.


Photo archives, QMI Agency

The leader of the Conservative Party, Éric Duhaime, pulled off a masterful feat by presenting us with a cumulative surplus of $21 billion at the end of the five fiscal years covered by the next government mandate. Before, of course, transferring money to the Generations Fund.

This result is all the more striking since the Conservative leader has been extremely generous with his personal tax cuts: they total $29.1 billion over five years.

Added to this is an increase in the tax credit for career extension for experienced workers: $5.6 billion.

But how does he go about financing such electoral giveaways?

A government of Éric Duhaime would succeed in recovering $32 billion in government spending, which would include: the elimination of subsidies for electric vehicles ($2 billion); the cap on government spending ($6.7 billion); a decrease in business assistance ($13.1 billion); the addition of private healthcare ($4.5 billion).

The Conservative leader is also counting on deregulation to raise additional revenue of $7.9 billion. In addition, he revised upwards (+ $5.7 billion) the revenues projected in the Pre-election Report.



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