Reddit AMA with 'The Agenda' host on upcoming Ontario Election

Some good questions (and answers) in here...

I am Steve Paikin, host of TVO's The Agenda. Ask Me Anything. : CanadaPolitics (external - login to view)

Q: Hi Steve, there was a lot of coverage of Mr Hudak's campaign slip up on the weekend where he didn't clear an event with the TTC and then had his event shut down. How could something as simple as clearing the event or even knowing the regulations be overlooked by professional campaign staff?

A: Well, the reality is, it was. this happens in every campaign. things never go as smoothly as the backroom staffers think they will. frankly, i don't mind it. i much prefer this occasional slip-up to hiding the leaders from the public and never letting them interact with a single "real" person for a month.

Q: Hey Steve, welcome back to our humble subreddit, and thank you for doing another AMA. Transit expansion is now a household issue in the GTA, after perhaps decades of neglect. You have been around for a while, why do you think successive governments stopped investing in public transit after the 1970s or so?

A: They didn't. the government from 1990-95 under bob rae's premiership invested a lot in building new subways. the next government (1995-2003) under mike harris' and ernie eves' leadership decided in their wisdom we couldn't afford to build those lines, so they filled in the holes. in hindsight, it was clearly a mistake, as we're trying to build those same lines today, only at significantly more cost.

Q: Hi Steve. How do you think the NDP is going to explain to Northern Ontarians why they defeated a budget that slated $1 billion dollars for the Ring of Fire. Many NDP strongholds - or at least potential ridings - would have benefited from this money. What's their angle?

A: Well, i take andrea horwath at her word when she says it doesn't matter what was in the budget because she doesn't believe the liberals will follow through on it. that's her position. of course, the liberals' position is closer to yours, which is, how could she defeat a budget that has a higher minimum wage, more $ for personal support and early childhood education workers, income support for retirees, public transit enhancements, etc.

Q: Hi Steve, would TVO be covered by Hudak's pledge to eliminate 100,000 positions, and if so, how do you deal with that conflict of interest as you cover his campaign?

A: As mentioned before, we deal with apparent conflicts of interest around here all the time. the CBC has the same problem when they have to cover decisions by the government that cut their funding. private television deals with it when they have to cover news about one of their big advertisers. i think the reality is, we just keep our heads down and do our jobs and let the chips fall where they may. we do a show that focuses a lot on policy. with their white papers, the tories for the past year put our more policy than anyone. so we did a lot of programs on that. people asked me, "why do you put hudak on the air when he'll probably cut you guys if he wins?" my answer: we can't worry about that. we just do our jobs. that's how we maintain our reputation for fairness, which i hope we have earned.

Q: Can Tim Hudak guarantee Ontarians that by cutting 100,000 civil service jobs, the private sector understands, and is obligated to generating 1,000,000 jobs?

A: Well, obviously, there's no guarantee that cutting taxes will oblige the private sector to create a million jobs, more than making up for the 100,000 jobs lost in the public sector. but that's the bet hudak is making. interesting that harper and mcguinty made the same bet over the past decade and it didn't work. corporations sat on their money. even jim flaherty and mark carney chided companies for sitting on "dead money" rather than hiring people.
Last edited by mentalfloss; May 12th, 2014 at 01:48 PM..
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#2  Top Rated Post
I really enjoy that show. He does a pretty good job at hiding his own opinions during interviews and comes off as one of the most objective shows on current affairs.
He made some pretty fair points about the fallacy of tax cuts and job growth.

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