Ontario Election 2014: Gas Plants, Corruption, Energy Issues Dominate Debate

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Liberal corruption and the Conservatives' plan to cut public sector jobs dominated the Ontario leader's election debate tonight.

Premier Kathleen Wynne was on the defensive from the very start of the 90-minute debate, forced to apologize repeatedly for the gas plants scandal and defend soaring electricity rates.

Wynne admitted voters have a right to be angry because "the public good was sacrificed for partisan interests" when the Liberals cancelled two gas plants prior to the 2011 election at a cost of up to $1.1 billion.

She said there had been a breach of trust between her government and the people, and vowed it wouldn't happen again.

The Liberal leader also said the government had to invest billions in a badly neglected electricity system, which is why electricity rates are so high.

Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak defended his plan to cut 100,000 public sector jobs while promising to create one million new jobs over eight years, with both Wynne and NDP Leader Andrea Horwath saying he made a basic math mistake.

Horwath said "corruption in the Liberal party runs deep," calling it the central issue of the election campaign while insisting voters "don't have to chose between bad ethics and bad math."

The three leaders answered six questions posed by voters on topics including government ethics, job creation, education, transit and the deficit.

Ontario voters go to the polls on June 12.

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