Finance minister tells Halifax business audience not to link budget to election

Canada's Finance Minister Bill Morneau delivers the budget in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, March 19, 2019. REUTERS/Chris Wattie

Finance Minister Bill Morneau told a Halifax business audience today that they shouldn’t think of this week’s federal budget as an election document.

In remarks to the Halifax Chamber of Commerce, Morneau said that if there was anything the government did in the budget that was a surprise then “you haven’t been watching us for the last four years.”

READ MORE: Finance Minister Bill Morneau makes stop at UNB Saint John on budget tour

Morneau also continued to make the case for more spending, saying now is “exactly the wrong time” to balance the budget quickly.

He says to do so would bring higher unemployment and bigger economic problems.

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How the 2019 budget can benefit you – Mar 21, 2019

Morneau said the Liberal government’s goal is to spend while reducing the amount of debt as a function of the economy.

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Tuesday’s budget projects a deficit in 2019-20 of $19.8 billion.

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