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Alberta ready for a fight over equalization and pipelines

The UCP leader additionally expressed his desire for Alberta to hold a referendum regarding Canada’s equalization payment system.
Anthony Daoud Montreal, QC

Is anybody surprised United Conservative Party leader Jason Kenney won Alberta’s provincial election on Tuesday night?

Rachel Notley’s loss to Kenney was crushing, and the NDP only retained 24 seats in the legislature and by comparison, the UCP won 63 seats.

In a victory speech, during which the crowd began to chant “Jason, Jason”, the UCP leader made it very clear to the audience, and the rest of Canada, that he is ready to get to work. His emphatic victory continues the blue wave that has been sweeping up the provincial government of Canada.

Make no mistake, Kenney is ready to lead Alberta in a new direction, and his vision has not been led astray. Perhaps his greatest remarks during the speech was when he assured Albertans, who have been suffering from Notley and Trudeau’s energy policies, that hope is on “the horizon”.

Carbon Tax must go away

The Premier-designate made it very clear that as Alberta’s leader, he will take the required course of action to combat, what he describes as, “foreign funded influence”.

These groups include the Tides Foundation and the David Suzuki Foundation, both of whom he alleges were responsible for wrecking Alberta’s economy.

Like Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, and New Brunswick, Kenney has also promised to fight Justin Trudeau’s carbon tax.

Rather than supporting the Liberal “price on pollution”, he is hoping to find alternative solutions to protect the environment, in the form of scientific research.

No more equalization

The UCP leader additionally expressed his desire for Alberta to hold a referendum regarding Canada’s equalization payment system.

Saskatchewan’s Scott Moe, and even the province’s NDP have spoken out against equalization, calling it unfair.

Just to put it into perspective Quebec is set to receive $13 billion from the federal government this year alone. Alberta, on the other hand, won’t be receiving anything in 2019 or 2020, which is why many critics in the province have spoken out against it.

In 2016, Canada’s federal government received a staggering $49 billion from Albertan tax dollars but only gave $27.2 billion back.

What this means is that the average Albertan paid $5,265 more than they get back.

With the province’s unemployment rate sitting at nearly 10%, it is evident why Kenney, and his supporters, find the system unfair.

Legault swings first

In what may be the first of many disagreements, Quebec Premier Francois Legault wasted little time in making it clear to Kenney that he does not want any oil pipeline to pass through la Belle Province.

This comes after Kenney’s call for the two leaders to collaborate and allow more Albertan oil access to Quebec’s market. He went further to claim that pipelines are fundamental for Canada, as a whole, to prosper.
The irony is that Quebec will be receiving $13 billion in equalization payments this year. With some of that money coming from Albertan taxpayers, it is politically unwise for Legault to so firmly rebuke any potential pipeline.

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Anthony Daoud
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