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New Democrat Leader Andrea Horwath officially launches campaign

Last Updated Apr 29, 2018 at 3:39 pm EDT

TWITTER/@AndreaHorwath

Ontario’s New Democrat leader officially launched what her party is promising to be “the biggest campaign” in its history on Sunday, less than six weeks ahead of a provincial election.

Andrea Horwath was nominated as a candidate in her riding of Hamilton Centre at an event in Hamilton that also featured community leaders, other legislators and Tom Wilson of Blackie and the Rodeo Kings.

The vote in June marks the third election in which Horwath has led the NDP.

The NDP’s platform promised free child care for families earning less than $40,000 and a boost to hospital budgets if elected.

Horwath reiterated those promises at Sunday’s launch, along with a pledge to bring Hydro One back into public hands, and once again presented the NDP as an alternative to the governing Liberals and the Opposition Progressive Conservatives.

“Let’s knock on more doors than ever before,” Horwath told the gathered crowd. “Let’s replace the cynicism of those other parties with hope.”

But the party has projected five consecutive deficits to pay for its plan, with a $3.3 billion shortfall in 2018-2019 falling to $1.9 billion by 2022-2023.

The Liberals, too, have said they would run multi-year deficits. And while the Tories have yet to release a costed platform, leader Doug Ford has said he would eventually bring the province back into the black — just not in his first year in office.