Student Vote: UCP sweeps Peace Country, wins majority government

Student Vote: UCP sweeps Peace Country, wins majority government

The opposition Alberta Liberals won 40 percent of the 1993 vote but none of their legislators had any government experience.

The 28-day election campaign in Canada's fourth most populous province centred around its uneasy economic future.

Alberta's incoming premier plans to take on environmental charities that he says are blocking exports of the province's oil, but those groups may be saying "bring it on".

Jason Kenney and the UCP are headed towards a decisive win tonight with a majority of seats, taking control of the Alberta Legislative Assembly for what will likely be the next four years.

They add, however, that the province's difficulty in moving oil to market due to a lack of pipeline capacity - blamed for steep discounts in western Canadian crude prices last fall - will remain a major thorn in the side of the new government.

She becomes the opposition leader and holds onto the Edmonton-Strathcona riding.

On the political fringes are the Alberta Party and the Liberals, each of which elected one candidate to the legislature in 2015.

Unofficial results from Elections Alberta show Calgary's closest contest is in Calgary-Falconridge where just 1.2 per cent of votes separate two candidates for either victory or defeat.

Unlike the party's more concrete policy proposals - such as a corporate tax cut from 12 per cent to eight per cent, or a one-third reduction in regulations - the UCP's fight-back strategy is among its most loosely defined.

It's exactly what many oil and gas companies wanted to see, despite how much credit they give Notley for her performance during her single term in power.

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In Calgary Tuesday night, Kenney spoke to a packed crowd in the United Conservative Party headquarters, delivering a speech focused predominately on a revitalized economy and his commitment to thwart "special interest groups" meddling in provincial affairs.

Shortly after establishment media outlets declared the UCP winners, Kenney received congratulations from several provincial and federal leaders including Ontario premier Doug Ford and federal Conservative leader Andrew Scheer.

The program announced its results across all 87 ridings: The United Conservative Party (UCP) forms a majority government with 49 seats (57,945 votes or 36 per cent of the vote).

The NDP's surprise win in 2015 ended more than four decades of Progressive Conservative governments in Alberta.

Kenney, who won his riding in Calgary-Lougheed, is a former federal Conservative cabinet minister under Stephen Harper.

After stubbornly low commodity prices since late 2014, the value of Alberta oil has stabilized recently.

"Kenney should waste no time in repealing the NDP's unconstitutional Bill 9, which banned peaceful, pro-life expression on taxpayer-owned public sidewalks within 50 metres of abortion facilities", said Jack Fonseca, political operations director for Campaign Life Coalition.

In a statement, Trudeau congratulated Kenney and said he will work with the new government to create jobs, build infrastructure, and grow business and industry.

Nearly 700,000 people voted in advance polls, well above the record 235,000 who did in 2015.

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