NDP Leader Jack Layton says his party's platform will balance the federal government's books in four years and warns Canadians will suffer from major service cuts under either a Conservative or Liberal government.
At a rally in Saskatoon Saturday, Layton took aim at both Conservative Leader Stephen Harper and Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff, slamming both their parties' platforms.
"[The Conservatives] say they’re going to cut $11 billion in government services and programs — they don’t tell us what they are," Layton said.
Speaking a day before he unveils his party's platform on Sunday, Layton said a prime minister can't cut $11 billion worth of services without "hurting the quality of life" for Canadians.
"We will see a different kind of Canadian society where many of the programs that Canadians have counted on are going to be decimated and we think that is the wrong direction to go," Layton later told the media.
"Our platform will be well-costed with all the specific information indicating how we will achieve a balanced budget in four years without any cuts to services that families depend on," he then said in French.
The Tories have pledged to cut $11 billion in government expenditures over the next three years by controlling spending and cutting waste, as well as through retirements in the federal civil service.
The NDP leader also targeted the Liberals, warning that they too would be bringing in major cuts to services, "just like the Chrétien Liberals."
He said Ignatieff cannot be trusted, accusing him flip-flopping on issues such as corporate tax cuts, the Afghanistan mission and supporting Harper in the House of Commons "time and time again."
Layton said his own party's platform promises will be costed out and that the NDP will "indicate absolutely every step that we will be taking to achieve the balanced budgets and make sure the services are there for Canadians."