There aren’t too many Albertans pleased with the results of the Oct. 21 federal election. I’m definitely one of them.
First and foremost, and I know I touched on this last week, I was and remain concerned about how the economy and financial health of Alberta was discussed very little during the campaign; instead, leaders and parties seemed more concerned with insulting each other and talking about issues like climate change (more about that later).
A collection of Canadian businesses leaders echoed my concerns this past week. “Lack of proposals or even discussions of a prosperity strategy by candidates seeking public office is very disconcerting,” Jim Balsillie, former co-CEO of Research In Motion and chair of the Council of Canadian Innovators, told The Canadian Press in an email. Jim, I’m completely in your corner.
The minority government is doomed to fail; anyone who remembers early 80’s Canadian politics knows that. What really concerns me is that more Canadians voted for the Conservative Party than any other party, yet pundits and political experts have already spoke several times about Liberal Prime Minister Justin Trudeau forming alliances with the NDP and Green Party to pass legislation.
As the Liberal Party lost seats in said election, it would behoove the Prime Minister to show respect to the electorate and approach the CPC to discuss legislation rather than the third and fourth horses past the finish line. The NDP and Green Party don’t represent the feelings of the majority of Canadians, especially when it comes to issues like climate change.
The climate change issue was not, according to most pundits, big on the minds of people voting CPC; if climate change was as big an issue as some claim, the Liberals would still have a majority and the NDP or Green Party would have captured the popular vote. I’m going to go out on a limb here and say the economy was the number one issue, and if the CPC garnered the popular vote, that means the majority of Canadians are more concerned about the economy than climate change. Yet, it appears the Liberals will proceed with their carbon tax and climate change measures with the NDP and Green Party support.
Prior to the election, the Canadian Press was running stories alleging the Green Party could break through as a major force. Didn’t happen. While the Green Party set an all-time record for seats (they have three now), the BQ garnered 10 times that number just in Quebec. The BQ, a regional party, even beat the Green Party, a national party, in popular vote. Why people even talk about a non-entity like the Green Party of Canada, I will never know. People obviously aren’t voting for them.
The sad thing fact is that a lame duck Prime Minister will approach two runner-up parties to govern the country, while the party with the majority of votes is ignored.
But with a minority government, we’ll likely have another chance soon to exercise our voting rights.
Stu Salkeld is the editor of The Wetaskiwin Pipestone Flyer and writes a regular column for the paper.