‘Make Alberta Great Again’: Another Canadian Province Boots Liberals Out Of Power Over Carbon Taxes

REUTERS/Chris Wattie

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Michael Bastasch DCNF Managing Editor
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Alberta’s United Conservative Party (UCP) won a landslide victory against the liberal New Democratic Party (NDP) Tuesday night.

UCP Leader Jason Kenney’s first priority: repeal the province’s carbon tax.

It’s the first time an Albertan government has been toppled after only one term in power, and it’s the third time in the last year conservatives have won a landslide victory on a platform centered around repealing carbon taxes.

“Friends, tonight the silent majority has spoken,” Kenney said in his victory speech. “They have chosen free enterprise values over the politics of resentment.”

Nearly one year ago, Ontario Premier Doug Ford, a conservative, won a landslide election victory promising to repeal the province’s cap-and-trade program and join the legal fight against Canada’s federal carbon tax. (RELATED: Will Liz Warren’s Green Energy Build-Up Harm Wildlife? Experts Have Concerns)

UCP leader Jason Kenney reacts at his election night headquarters in Calgary

United Conservative Party (UCP) leader Jason Kenney reacts at his provincial election night headquarters in Calgary, Alberta, Canada April 16, 2019. REUTERS/Chris Wattie.

Ford joined Kenney at an anti-carbon tax rally in 2018 — where many attendees reportedly wore blue “MAGA” (Make Alberta Great Again) hats. Ford now has another ally in the legal and political fight against Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government.

Trudeau’s carbon tax went into effect in early April, slapping Canadian provinces with a federal carbon tax in the absence of a provincial carbon price. But Alberta’s election suggests Trudeau’s climate agenda may end up being politically damaging to his government.

“From its very introduction, the carbon tax has been very unpopular in Alberta,” Scott Hennig, president of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, said in a statement. “Even dressing it up and trying to bribe taxpayers with rebate cheques didn’t work.”

Canada's PM Trudeau attends a meeting with Stelco Chief Executive Alan Kestenbaum on Parliament Hill in Ottawa

Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau attends a meeting with Stelco Chief Executive Alan Kestenbaum in Trudeau’s office on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, April 11, 2019. REUTERS/Chris Wattie.

“Alberta’s premier-elect Jason Kenney recognized this, and committed that Bill 1 would be to scrap the carbon tax. Clearly, it has been a big vote-getter for his party,” Henning said.

Kenney promised to repeal the province’s carbon tax, build stalled pipeline projects and create a “war room” to push back against “foreign-funded special interests” trying to hamper Alberta’s oil and gas-dependent economy.

Kenney said foreign groups, like the U.S.-based Tides Foundation, were “leading a campaign of economic sabotage against this great province.” Tides is a major funder of environmental groups, including anti-fracking activists.

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