Canada's Flaherty says no negotiation on budget

Tue Mar 22, 2011 5:49pm EDT
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OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canada's Conservative government will not negotiate with opposition parties who plan to reject the budget, Finance Minster Jim Flaherty said on Tuesday, raising the likelihood of a spring election.

The government had hinted before the budget was released on Tuesday that it would include items requested by the opposition New Democrats in order to win their support, and Flaherty said he was disappointed they had rejected it almost immediately.

New Democratic leader Jack Layton said his party could not accept the budget in its present form, and the Liberals and Bloc Quebecois also said they would not support the budget.

(Reporting Allan Dowd; editing by Rob Wilson)

<p>Canada's Finance Minister Jim Flaherty holds copies of his budget in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa March 22, 2011. REUTERS/Chris Wattie</p>