Popcorn and Beer aside
First of all, Harper is promising to spend money on creating more daycare spaces too. He's also promised tax breaks for kids who play sports which, to me, sounds a lot like someone trying to tell people how to raise their kids (and, for what it's worth, the tax breaks for kids who play sports are one of the few Harper tax breaks I support).
The fact is, there's nothing in the Liberal plan that forces you to enroll your kids in a daycare program. Well, to be honest, there's nothing in the Liberal plan that ensures this money will be more than a cash transfer to the provinces, so I should probably rephrase that. There's nothing about a National Child care plan that forces you to enroll kids in a daycare program. Parents still have a choice in how they want to raise their children. The idea of a child care program is simply to give parents the option of placing their kids in a child care program, by creating affordable spaces across the country.
It's the same principle as any government program. When the government spends money on post-secondary education, they're not forcing anyone to go to University. When the government spends money on job training, they're not forcing anyone to get job training. A lot of people hate the idea of any sort of government program, and that's fine. A lot of people feel there are better ways to spend government money and I'm tempted to agree. But I suspect a lot of Canadians like the idea of government run programs, and that may be why the Liberal poll numbers are high, despite the fact that the Liberal campaign has been rather lackluster.