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article imageOp-Ed: Will British Columbia voters reject the HST in the referendum?

By Gibril Koroma     Aug 2, 2011 in Politics
Vancouver - Voting by mail in BC on the Harmonized Sales Tax is ongoing, fast and furious. The deadline for all voting (August 5) will soon be here and the results will be announced in a couple of weeks.
The provincial government headed by Christy Clark has spent millions of dollars on presenting the HST has one of the best things to ever happen in BC while the anti-HST camp headed by former premier Bill Vander Zalm have put all the resources at their disposal to see that voters reject the tax massively.
The Vander Zalm camp has however been a bit worried that voters would make mistakes by for example voting NO instead of YES, by the way the question put to them is framed. The referendum question asks: Are you in favour of extinguishing the HST (Harmonized Sales Tax) and reinstating the PST (Provincial Sales Tax) in conjunction with the GST (Goods and Services Tax)? Many voters with little education or little English are likely to trip over this question and vote NO when they mean YES, and vice versa.
They are also complaining that the government has been spending too much taxpayers' money on their campaign and that their anti-HST posters had been mysteriously removed by persons unknown. The provincial government says it knows nothing about it. There have also been complaints of late ballot packages in the mail.
To make matters worse for Vander Zalm and his team, Premier Clark has promised to bring down the HST from 12 percent to 10 percent. But Zalm and his supporters including well known columnist Bill Tielman have not been sitting on their hands although they have comparatively less resources at their disposal. It is very difficult if not impossible to give an answer to the inevitable question: Will the HST in BC survive or die?
Bill Vander Zalm. Fighting to the end.
Bill Vander Zalm. Fighting to the end.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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