The re-election of George Bush and the gain in Congressional seats by conservative Republicans in 2004 made many Vermonters realize that the country we once loved is headed down the wrong road.
Like Canadians, Vermonters have always believed in tolerance and progressivism:
We were the first state to abolish slavery. We have passed ground-breaking environmental laws. Vermont’s Senator Ralph Flanders was among the first to take on Joe McCarthy and his witch-hunters in the 1950s. George Aiken, another Vermont senator, created the school lunch program. And of course, Vermont was the first state in the United States to allow civil unions for gay couples.
For 14 years, (from 1777 until 1791) Vermont was an independent republic.
Ethan Allen, the leader of Vermont’s fight for independence carried out negotiations with Canada to discuss joining with them.
Vermont has strong ties of both trade and blood to Canada. In the 19th and early 20th Century Vermont saw a huge influx of Quebecois to our state.
A Foreign Policy Of Which We Can Be Proud
- Canada refused to send troops to participate in the invasion of Iraq.
- Canada signed the treaty to ban anti-personnel land mines – the United States refused
- The United States withdrew from the Kyoto Accord on global warming. Canada remains committed.
- The United States consistently opposed the International Criminal Court. Canada has consistently supported it.
A Cheaper Health Care System That Covers Everyone
- Canada has had a Universal Health Care System since 1957
- Canadians’ life expectancy is among the highest in the world
- Quality of care is equivalent to that in the U.S. and the costs are about half of those in the U.S.
- Canadians have free choice of doctors and hospitals.
- Canada has a lower rate of infant mortality than the U.S. by about 25%
A Commitment to Human Rights and Public Safety
- Firearm homicide rates are 8 times higher in the United States than in Canada.
- Same-sex couples can marry in Ontario, British Columbia, Quebec, Manitoba, the Yukon Saskatchewan and Nova Scotia.”
- The U.S. continues to fight and lose an ill-fated “war against drugs” that costs billions of dollars and incarcerates hundreds of thousands who could otherwise be tax-paying citizens. Canada is moving towards a more sane, rational drug policy, beginning with decriminalizing possession of small amounts of Marijuana.
- Canada abolished the death penalty in 1976.
- Homicides, at 1/3 the rate of those in the United states are declining – In the U.S.they are rising.
- In 2003 The U.S. incarcerated 715 citizens per 100,000 of population, Canada 116.
A Vibrant and Growing Economy
- In the past thirty years, Canada has been number one among the G-7 countries in terms of employment growth, and number two in terms of economic growth.
- Canada is repeatedly ranked number 1 by the United Nations Human Development Index as the best country in the world to live in, based on a variety of factors, including health, education, good physical environment, freedom of action, mobility and income.
- According to the United Nations, Canada is the best country in the world for providing access to education.
According to a 2003 WHO study, life expectancy at birth in Canada is 79.8 years, versus 77.3 in the U.S.
Canada has a larger middle class and a far lower poverty rate than the United States does.