Ontario Premier Daulton McGuinty's budget needs to be voted on because the Liberals have a minority government. Tim Hudak's leader of the Progressive Conservative Party has already stated he will vote no. This leaves the NDP and their leader Andrea Horwath the ability of either passing the budget or voting against the budget which would trigger a provincial election. She is also in a position to negotiate some changes in the budget, a budget which includes the ending of the slots deal with racetracks in Ontario.
Unfortunately, politics isn't about doing what is right. It is mostly about who will give you the most donations in the future, paying back those who donated in the past, and making decisions based on the current status of one's party with an eye towards more power and seats in the future. Oh, and the odd dirty deal where some money slide under the table to the politician.
The NDP really gained during the fall election, winning 17 seats. They still came in third. They would not be expected to even come close to a majority if they forced another election. Popularity for the Liberal Party has dropped significantly since the election, which means that the PC could possibly win with a majority. They would definitely beat the Liberals now that the Liberals have alienated the horse racing industry couple with the public's knowledge regarding ORNGE. But a PC victory isn't good for the NDP's objectives, as they are to the left of the Liberal Party, which is left to the PC Party. However, putting the PC's in charge might be a decent gamble for the NDP going forward, banking on the PC's to screw up so that the NDP would have a shot of winning the following Provincial election (but I don't think they thinking like that).
The other factor to consider is the cost of the election. Both the PC's and the NDP are still in the hole from the fall election. This definitely is something that will hold Horwath back from causing an election within the next two months.
Horwath has been inundated with calls from the racetrack community since stating she will listen to the public regarding whether to vote yay or nay for the budget. But I'm pretty sure the decision has been as long as she can make it look like she won something through negotiations with the Liberals prior to the vote.
It would be great if one of the concessions would be a continuation of the racetrack slots deal until at least 2015. Though this is unlikely because the Liberals seem to have their heart set on mindlessly destroying the horse racing industry in Ontario. I'll get to that in my next post.