Federal parties left dozens of potential election promises on cutting-room floor

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OTTAWA — A new report by the parliamentary budget officer suggests political parties left dozens of potential platform proposals on the cutting-room floor during the last election campaign.

The report reviews the spending watchdog’s first-ever experience costing out platform commitments during the election, after the Liberal government gave it that power in 2017 as a way to give voters more insight into the credibility of campaign promises.

The watchdog was asked to estimate the costs of 216 proposals between June and October — double what was expected.

But only 115 of those estimates ever saw the light of day, meaning parties walked away from nearly half of them.

The budget office also says it costed only about half of all the measures with potential financial impacts that ended up in party platforms.

The last request to cost a proposal was received one week before voters went to the polls.