The New Democrats rolled out their first ad of the Ontario election campaign on Sunday.

The 40-second online video takes aim squarely at the Liberals, showing a rising tally of "wasted tax dollars" against a red backdrop as an announcer says Liberal leader Kathleen Wynne's party deserves to be "put in the penalty box" for what he calls years of mismanagement.

The ad talks about the eHealth and ORNGE debacles and the $1.1 billion spent on cancelled gas plants, the ad says Wynne’s government still “gave public CEOs huge bonuses and outrageous salaries.” 

"What this ad is, is a reminder for Ontarians about the track record, the dismal track record of the Liberal in Ontario," Horwath said Sunday.

"I think that's a big part of what this campaign is all about and that's why we thought it was important to remind people about the track record of the Liberals."

In the meantime, Horwath also defended her expense claims after the Liberals released a statement Saturday blasting the NDP leader for claiming small expenses such as coffee and muffins.

Horwath says the Liberals are "reaching for straws" in trying to drum up scandal about her expenses.

The NDP leader made the comments as she hosted a call-in show on radio station NewsTalk 1010 and took several calls from people about the issue.

The Liberals have accused Horwath of billing taxpayers for thousands of dollars in personal expenses — including muffins, taxi rides and a $0.25 parking fee — even as she has criticized others for doing the same.

Horwath says she buys her own lunch and coffee when she's at her office in Hamilton or at the legislature.

But she says when she travels around the province she has no choice but to expense items she normally wouldn't.

Horwath says she is "very frugal" and makes sure all of her expenses are vetted by the integrity commissioner.

Horwath told the callers that all MPPs, including Premier Kathleen Wynne, file expense claims and the NDP hasn't retaliated because the Liberal attack is misguided.