Wednesday, March 27, 2013

By Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Wednesday, March 27, 2013

NDP Leader Andrea Horwath is rebranding herself as a tax fighter

Remember the war on cars? Or the gravy train Rob Ford rode to power at city hall?
Now car wars and the gravy train are sweeping Queen’s Park — courtesy of the mayor’s passionate new ally, NDP Leader Andrea Horwath.

Taking a page from Ford’s playbook, Horwath is rebranding herself as a tax fighter and road warrior rising to the defence of drivers.

Perhaps you can’t imagine Horwath, who heads Ontario’s supposedly progressive New Democrats, standing shoulder to shoulder with coach Ford — who focuses more on football’s gridiron than fixing gridlock.

But you would be wrong. Horwath and Ford are shrewd political soulmates who understand the pursuit of populism — the cynical politics that appeals to people’s pocketbooks and generates popularity.

In fact, Ford could take lessons from the trailblazing Horwath, who is rebranding the NDP as the party of the extreme status quo: Stuck on gridlock.

With the GTA choking on cars and transit standing still, politicians are trying to get ahead. Ford wants to set drivers free, for free — no money down. Horwath, too, wants drivers to get a free ride, but wants to expand our transit network by making rich corporations pay. (Source: Toronto Star)