TORONTO, Jan 20 ( – Ontario Premier Mike Harris’ campaign wizard, Tom Long, has bid
adieu to the federal Tories in his article in the January 18 National Post. The article is
causing concern among social conservatives who fear Long’s involvement in the United
Alternative may be to transform it into a clone of the fiscal conservative only Harris

Long was once president of the young Progressive Conservatives of Ontario and was at that time
outspokenly pro-life. Since then he has quietly adopted a plan for power which no longer
includes social conservatism.

In the National Post article “So long Tories, I hate to go” Long relates his overwhelming
pre-occupation with fiscal matters and states that “Much like Mike Harris’ Common Sense
Revolution, this is what the United Alternative is all about” and “Mr. Harris’ political
successes speak for themselves.” He mentions tax cuts, a flat tax, global competition, wealth
creation, work for welfare and reducing the size and cost of government.

Critics note that although most Reformers and UA supporters might agree with much of this
fiscal agenda, nowhere in Long’s article is there any mention of also providing a political
alternative to the anti-family, anti-life and social left-wing, Liberal, Tory and NDP
parties. This reflects the Harris government’s ideology which is fiscal conservative and
establishment leftist on social issues. It contradicts the overwhelming social, as well as
fiscal conservatism of delegates to last year’s UA convention in Ottawa.

A fair number of Ontario Tory MPPs are known to be consistently conservative on all issues,
with a greater depth of purpose that includes serious concern for families, children and the
quality of life in the province. Unfortunately, the government’s powerful inner circle has
prohibited them from pursuing any meaningful changes to the status quo. They are intimidated
to keep quiet about these matters and told that they will “cause division in the party” and
jeopardize the success of the god-like fiscal agenda.

Observers conclude there appears to be an unwritten, but ruthlessly maintained agreement that
Red Tories will support the government’s fiscal policies as long as controversial social
matters are left as set up by the previous Liberal and NDP regimes. Hence, the Ontario PC
government has been a huge disappointment to family and life supporting organizations and
individuals. The recent rushed passage of a bill granting homosexual partners the same rights
as common law spouses was the last straw for many of them.

Under the Tories, despite the welcome tax cuts and other dramatic changes, family life and
the general quality of social life in Ontario has not improved and many would argue that it
has noticeably declined.

It remains to be seen whether the social conservatives can be lured into supporting a
strictly economic agenda as supposedly the only route to power. As the Ontario experience has
so far shown, the selling out to precious first principles for that power is of highly
questionable long-term value. Many are also convinced that dumping social conservative
policies was never necessary in the first place and that the Ontario Tories bought a false
line from political manipulators.

The attractiveness of Reform has not been just its fiscal policies but also its many down-to-
earth, sincere, social conservative MPs who have been a stunning contrast to the usual
political hacks in the other parties. The party’s failures in the East could be at least
partly attributable to the fact that most of the eastern candidates in the last two elections
were not of the social conservative character that was dominant in the successfully elected
Reform candidates.

Many social conservative UA delegates are hoping for a merging of conservative Canadians into
a new party and platform that will provide the country with a genuine across the board
alternative on all issues and one that will not be afraid to tackle so-called “difficult
issues”. They have a trust that Canadians are not so mean-spirited and narrow-minded as to
reject a party with excellent and unique policies on a wide range of issues just because some
of those issues might not initially be perceived as politically correct.  Reform has proved
that it can be done in the West and many are convinced that, with the right policies,
leadership and organization, the same came be done by the United Alternative across the

See Tom Long article at:

See articles on Harris government’s homosexual bill at:

See last provincial election analysis on Ontario government record at