Welcome to week three of the 2019 election campaign!
Posted on April 1, 2019
Parties primarily focused on the social aspects of their platforms last week, releasing positions on healthcare, education, and care for seniors.
This weekend, both the NDP and the UCP finally released their full elections platforms. The NDP platform continues the commitments outlined by the party over the past two weeks. The platform includes the plan for province-wide childcare, a ban on conversion therapy, a commitment to build 70 more schools, and a program to help first-time homebuyers purchase their first home amongst a number of other promises. Despite all of these new programs, the NDP promises to balance the budget by 2023.
The UCP platform focuses primarily on the economic wellbeing of the province. In addition to the announcements made over the past two weeks, the UCP intends to replace the NDP’s Climate Leadership Plan, including the current carbon tax, with a new Technology Innovation and Emissions Reduction program, introduce a separate youth minimum wage, reorganize Travel Alberta, and reduce the business income tax by four per cent. The UCP promises a balanced budget by 2022.
Albertans will finally have an opportunity to watch their potential Premiers spar with one another on April 4. The debate will be hosted by a consortium of media and will take place in the Edmonton CTV studio. The NDP was expected to push for more than one debate given Rachel Notley’s presumed strength in the area, however, the April 4 debate is expected to be the only one during the campaign. The NDP, UCP, Alberta Party, and Alberta Liberals will all be in attendance at the debate, however, the Freedom Conservative Party, under the leadership of Derek Fildebrandt was not invited to participate. Unlike Liberal leader David Khan and Alberta Party leader Stephen Mandel, Fildebrandt is currently an elected MLA and has expressed irritation at his exclusion.
Last week, more information came to light regarding the alleged kamikaze campaign run during the 2017 UCP leadership race. As mentioned last week, this is turning into one of those issues that seemingly will not disappear. After another weekend, the kamikaze issue is still at large, and the media continues to gather more information. On Friday afternoon, an emergency court injunction was filed in Calgary to suspend the Alberta Election Commissioner’s investigation until after the April 16 election. Arguments for the injunction will be heard by a judge on Monday.
Navigator’s top 6 news story daily picks
UCP unveils full election platform, by Emma Graney with the Calgary Herald
- The UCP has unveiled their full election platform, and it includes a new tax on large industrial emitters, killing the climate leadership plan, and an ‘Open for Business’ act. It also details a costed budget that includes $700 million in new spending over four years and a projected provincial debt of $86.1 billion by 2022-23.
Alberta NDP election platform promises balanced budget by 2023, by Jordan Omstead with CBC News
- With the release of their full platform, the NDP has stated that they believe they will be able to, if elected, balance Alberta’s budget by the year 2023. They also state plans to roll out billions of dollars into new funding for healthcare, education, and childcare.
NDP and UCP battle over budgets as full platforms are released, by Clare Clancy with the Calgary Herald
- The NDP and UCP unveiled conflicting platforms over the weekend, which has triggered a battle on how each party would handle issues surrounding Alberta’s economy. The two are set to go head-to-head in the upcoming debate on April 4.
Jason Kenney declines comment on reported UCP kamikaze campaign injunction, by Alanna Smith with the Edmonton Journal
- United Conservative Party Leader Jason Kenney refused to comment this weekend on a court injunction seeking to shut down an investigation into the funding of the “kamikaze” leadership campaign until after the Alberta election.
Alberta NDP leader joins leaders’ debate, by Laine Mitchell with CTV News
- After some uncertainty surrounding her participation, Rachel Notley has announced that she will join the provincial leaders’ debate. She joins Jason Kenney, Stephen Mandel, and David Khan, who will all participate on April 4.
Alberta’s election comes down to Calgary — again, by Éric Grenier with CBC News
- Éric Grenier discusses how the Alberta election has historically been hinged on voters in Calgary, and suggests that in this election, the odds are stacked against the NDP’s in this region. As a result, Grenier states that to win, Notley will need the support of her voters from 2015, but also many more.