Federal Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland is expected to table the Government of Canada’s 2023 budget on Tuesday. 

Heading into the budget, Moose Jaw – Lake Centre – Lanigan Conservative MP Fraser Tolmie said his number one priority will be fiscal responsibility. 

He wants to see the federal government reign in its spending, noting that “budgets don’t balance themselves.” 

“After the past eight years, this government has increased the national debt more than any other government in history,” Tolmie said. 

While the federal government has been framing this budget as using fiscal restraint, Tolmie said he hopes that is true, but has seen a lack of evidence so far. 

Another hot topic coming into the budget will be inflation relief. As of February, Canada’s inflation rate sits at 5.2 per cent. 

Tolmie feels that it is the federal government’s taxes, and specifically the carbon tax, that has been driving up inflation rates. He noted that when farmers and businesses are taxed more, the price tag is passed along to the consumer. 

“Their cause is the effect of what everybody else is dealing with, and so when they are trying to lay out cheques to everybody, that's not the solution. People want to have more money in their pockets, so, stop the bleeding at the tax source,” Tolmie said. 

Tolmie is hoping when it comes to healthcare spending that there is a focus on mental health, especially as we are coming out of the pandemic. 

He said the Conservative Opposition has been calling on the federal government to implement a national mental health hotline. 

“Well, we've been pushing for the hotline for a number of years for mental health, and so obviously we'd like to see this be concrete. This is a real challenge, especially after the pandemic,” Tolmie said. 

The budget is expected to be presented at 2 p.m. on Tuesday.