Cullen tries to block unpopular HST in Parliament

OTTAWACalling the HST “the worst tax at the worst possible time for British Columbia and Ontario,” Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP Nathan Cullen rose in Parliament today to try to block Conservative efforts to rush the HSTthrough without public input.

“Why ram this through with such speed now? It was only introduced Friday, no time for people to have any kind of conscious debate. It is a deeply unpopular tax move,” Cullen flared across the aisle at Finance Minister Jim Flaherty.

“We have been hearing from thousands and thousands of British Columbians and Ontarians upset and furious that the government had no mandate to do this.”

“Why will he (Flaherty) not simply face the truth, that we need a debate in the House and this closure is fundamentally undemocratic?” Cullen demanded.

Cullen is scheduled to speak on the HST again in debate this evening.

Debate is expected to close at 8:00 p.m. Eastern and be followed by a vote that will undoubtedly allow the minority Conservative government’s bid to lay the groundwork for B.C. and Ontario to implement a harmonized sales tax.

Despite disparaging the measure in the past as a “Harper tax,” Liberal Leader Michael Ignatieff said last week the Liberals would maintain their longtime support for the HST.