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Jason Kenney’s United Conservative Party projected to win majority government in Alberta

17 April 2019

United Conservative Party (UCP) member Jason Kenney regained control of the main oil-producing province of Canada after four years of New Democratic Party (NDP) rule.

Both Kenney and Notley blamed Trudeau for a lack of progress on new oil export pipelines, saying he was pressing for excessively stringent environmental standards at a time when energy producers were clamoring for more capacity.

Notley introduced a carbon tax to help cut emissions of greenhouse gases, a measure Kenney had vowed to scrap. "I really believe deeply this is the party of the future in this province when people get away from this polarization and start looking at ideas, and what our party and our province can do", he said.

But Kenney also had a message for Albertans who didn't vote UCP.

The campaign also served as a test with Alberta voters for Mr Kenney and his newly formed UCP, founded in 2017 with the merger of two right-leaning provincial political parties.

"We have chosen to put a price on pollution right across the country and there are conservative politicians who are using taxpayer money to fight a price on pollution in court", he responded.

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Trudeau said the federal government would continue to work on growing the economy while tackling climate change in a smart way.

Notley fought back over the campaign.

"Hopefully today we'll have another partner with my good friend Jason Kenney", he said.

The four-week campaign focused on personal attacks and on Alberta's fragile economy, which has been struggling with sluggish oil prices.

Nearly 700,000 people voted in advance polls, well above the record 235,000 who did in 2015. Kenney has argued that Notley's government has made a bad situation worse with higher taxes, more regulations and increases in minimum wage.

Notley, in turn, said Kenney's plan to freeze spending and pursue more private-care options in health care would have a profound impact on students and patients.

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The win could reverberate beyond Alberta, setting the party on a collision course with PM Justin Trudeau's Liberals over climate change. A number of his candidates either quit or apologized for past comments that were anti-LGBTQ, anti-Islamic or sympathetic to white nationalism.

Alberta NDP Leader Rachel Notley says she will stay on to lead her party in Opposition.

The last time Alberta had just two parties in the legislature was in 1993.

No candidates from the Alberta Party, Alberta Liberals, Freedom Conservative Party, Alberta Independence Party, Green or Independents were elected.

Unofficial numbers showed the Alberta Party eked out less than 10 per cent of the popular vote, compared with 54 per cent for the UCP and 33 per cent for the NDP.

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Jason Kenney’s United Conservative Party projected to win majority government in Alberta