Alberta's Nightmare Is Over
It's a great day in Alberta. Seeing weeks worth of fear-mongering and identity politics finally die out with a pathetic whimper has restored my faith in Albertans. I was worried in 2015, but it all makes sense now. Albertans were angry about the cronyism of the PC Party and the ineptitude of the Wildrose, so they had to do something drastic to make a change. Not thinking their votes would really matter, they rage-voted the NDP into power. At the time, it was devastating to watch, but hindsight is almost always 20/20. In 2019, it's clear that Albertans needed the NDP and Rachel Notley to bring them together by showing them the worst of the worst.
Almost five decades of Progressive Conservative rot needed to be dealt with. Albertans were becoming disenfranchised, discouraged and angry. Conservatives were divided and the only way to bring them all back together was through socialism, economic hardship and the devastating policies of the NDP. They didn't know it at the time—or maybe they did—but all of this pain would eventually unite them again.
It took four years of NDP rule for Albertans to realize they didn't want NDP rule. Of course, there will always be NDP and union loyalists in Alberta, but their numbers should stay innocuous as long as Jason Kenney does a good job. The Saskatchewan NDP seems on course for a fourth straight defeat after what will have been thirteen years of a centrist, anti-NDP government. Scott Moe has exceeded expectations and if Jason Kenney can do the same (including retiring when necessary), the United Conservatives should hold power for a long time to come. If the birthplace of Canadian socialism can keep the NDP down, Alberta should have no problem.
After four years of NDP destruction, there is so much to look forward to and so much to be proud of in Alberta.
Identity Politics Failed
Who is gay, who is brown, who is most disadvantaged by their sexual orientation and skin colour. This was all the NDP had to work with. However, none of the NDP's gross and racist campaign tactics worked in Alberta. It turns out, all Albertans came together to flick the lights out on an NDP government that had no successful policies to stand on. Calling Jason Kenney racist and homophobic didn't work. Albertans know he isn't any of those things. Albertans know that the economic hardships in Alberta are affecting everyone of all stripes, colours and sexual orientations.
We're all in this together. No Albertan would choose to leave another Albertan behind based on his skin colour or sexual orientation, minus a few on the fringes. Albertans came together after the Calgary flood of 2013, just like they did again in 2019. It didn't matter to most of them who was what colour, or who was sleeping with who. These things only matter to the NDP and their supporters.
Identity politics is what parties and leaders with no real policies choose as a strategy. Rachel Notley and her NDP didn't have a leg to stand on in this election, so they did what all other NDP governments across Canada have done. They smeared their opponents as racist and homophobic.
They did the same in 2015, thinking it was effective. Trying to repeat their success in 2019, they quickly realized Albertans were more concerned with defeating decades of PC corruption and Wildrose ineptitude in 2015—and less concerned about everyone's race and sexuality. Trying to pander to the most disadvantaged minorities in Alberta quickly led to the NDP's defeat. Albertans ended up being more united and less racist than the NDP had hoped.
Trying to convince minorities that they are victims of their orientation and race is a classic NDP tactic, but it failed miserably in Alberta. Albertans don't care what kind of off-the-cuff and sarcastic remarks or social media posts someone made a few years ago. People evolve.
Time To Re-Focus
Now that Notley's disastrous government has been put out if its misery, Albertans can focus on putting their province back on track. It won't be easy, but we have one less enemy to deal with. All that's left now is Justin Trudeau and his Liberals in Ottawa. While we work on getting rid of them, we can put the focus back on restoring the Alberta Advantage.
There are some taxes and regulations that need to be repealed, some educational standards that need to be reformed and an energy sector that needs relief. The previous PC government started to rot after the retirement of Ralph Klein, but Jason Kenney has an opportunity to take Alberta back to the Klein era of prosperity.
Kenney can cut taxes, cut spending and help Doug Ford, Scott Moe, Andrew Scheer and Brian Pallister fight Justin Trudeau's carbon tax in court. He can help push for pipelines while taking control of the Premier's office. He can fight the NDP in BC with new boycotts and legislation, while using his majority government to deregulate and diversify Alberta's economy.
There is so much to look forward to, but we'll need to hold Jason Kenney accountable. His job has only just begun.
A New Anti-Trudeau Government
Unlike Notley, Jason Kenney will fight Justin Trudeau. Rachel Notley talked a big game, but she did little to take Justin Trudeau to task on pipelines and the economy. While Trudeau's government was trying to help SNC-Lavalin get off the hook to save thousands of jobs in Quebec, Alberta's energy sector was left to die and Rachel Notley did nothing but talk.
Alberta has added another anti-Trudeau premier to the bunch. With every new conservative premier, Justin Trudeau gets weaker. With Trudeau still roiled in the SNC-Lavalin scandal, Jason Kenney has an opportunity to re-litigate the fact that Alberta's energy sector was given the backhand while a corrupt Quebec corporation was given the red carpet.
Having another loud premier to deal with, Justin Trudeau's PR game has taken another hit. He'll have some dodgy waters to navigate in the next federal election, with five angry premiers and Andrew Scheer breathing down his neck and making his life miserable. Let's not forget about New Brunswick's conservative premier, Blaine Higgs, who has been echoing the sounds of discontent in his province. After decades of stagnation and a suppressed energy sector, New Brunswick is ready to prosper.
As Jason Kenney enters in the mix, Trudeau's chances of winning another majority are slimmer. Expect a barrage from all five conservative premiers, some of whom are powerful and influential. They'll make Justin Trudeau's life a living nightmare just in time for October 21. Given his bad temper and thin skin, expect another serious Trudeau misstep or temper tantrum—or many.