Trudeau must keep promise to support the West, Kenney and Moe say

‘Albertans feel that everywhere we turn, we are being blocked in, pinned down and even attacked’

Premier Scott Moe speaks during the 2019 Saskatchewan Party Convention in Regina on Saturday, October 5, 2019. Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe says he’s a frustrated federalist and that there’s a fire burning in Western Canada. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Michael Bell)

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s promise to support the West should be more than lip service or there will be lasting damage to national unity, say the premiers of the oil-producing Prairie provinces.

The federal Liberals secured a minority mandate in Monday’s federal election, but did not retain a single seat in Saskatchewan or Alberta.

It’s a sign that voters “spoke with one loud voice of defiance,” Alberta Premier Jason Kenney said Tuesday.

“Albertans feel that everywhere we turn, we are being blocked in, pinned down and even attacked within our own country for what we do to contribute to it,” Kenney said in the legislature.

The Conservatives won 33 out of 34 seats in the province and the Liberals lost the three seats they held. Only the NDP was able to keep its one seat in Edmonton.

Kenney said he told Trudeau that he must support Alberta by helping it get its oil and gas to international markets.

He has also called on the prime minister to avoid any deals with the NDP, Bloc Quebecois or Greens that would endanger the TransMountain pipeline expansion through British Columbia.

READ MORE: People’s Party of Canada’s anti-immigration views ‘didn’t resonate’ with voters — prof

In Saskatchewan, the Conservatives won 14 out of 14 seats. Liberal veteran Ralph Goodale, who had held his Regina Wascana seat for more than 25 years, was swept out.

The federal election results confirm there’s a fire of frustration burning in Western Canada and it’s time for a new deal with Ottawa, Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe said.

“The path our federal government has been on the last four years has divided our nation,” Moe said in a statement.

“Last night’s election results showed the sense of frustration and alienation in Saskatchewan is now greater than it has been at any point in my lifetime.”

Speaking in Regina on Tuesday, Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer said he believes in Canada as a whole, but he hears the frustration coming from both provinces.

“We will fight for you. We will do everything we can to make sure that this Liberal government understands that it has to change course,” Scheer said. “It cannot continue to attack our energy sector.”

Moe said Trudeau must fulfil the demands of the two provinces if he is serious about reaching out to the West.

“Last night, Prime Minister Trudeau stated to Saskatchewan and Alberta: ‘I’ve heard your frustration. I want to be there to support you,’” Moe wrote.

“Those are nice words, but we need action, not words.”

Moe said he is ready to meet with Trudeau at any time to discuss the issues he has raised.

“Prime minister, you said you heard our frustrations and want to support us. We are ready for you to prove it.”

Kenney said Trudeau must keep that promise “to avoid real, lasting damage to the unity and prosperity of this federation.”

He said he will be creating a panel to gather ideas on how Alberta can be treated more fairly.

Premier Brian Pallister of Manitoba, where the Liberals lost three seats, said his government is ready to work with them, as well as all other parties. He said he has no interest in spending any time on talk of western separation.

“I don’t think you ever get anywhere in building a stronger relationship by threatening to leave it, so I don’t have any time for that.

“You have got to work together.”

— With files from Kelly Geraldine Malone in Winnipeg.

Dean Bennett and Stephanie Taylor, The Canadian Press

READ MORE: Scheer says Canada more divided than ever, as NDP and Bloc hold cards close

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

B.C. COVID-19 contact restrictions working, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

’Not out of the woods yet’ as next two weeks are critical

UPDATED: Some states of local emergency suspended by ministerial order

Suspension applies to regional districts but not First Nations

A letter from Bella Coola doctors on COVID-19: ‘All our lives depend on your actions now’

“None of us are invincible; we can all get it and spread it without even knowing.”

COVID-19: Bella Coola RCMP close detachment front door access

The public is being asked to call 250 799 5363 for assistance

Trudeau announces 75% wage subsidy for small businesses amid COVID-19

This is up from the previously announced 10 per cent wage subsidy

World update, 9:30 p.m. March 27: Positive news in Korea as U.S. hits 100,000 cases

The United States now has the most coronavirus cases of any country in the world

VIDEO: Penguins roam empty halls of Vancouver Aquarium

COVID-19 has forced the Vancouver Aquarium to close access to guests – leaving room for its residents

Kids get back to learning in B.C., online

Ministry of Education rolls out new tool for school

67 more B.C. COVID-19 cases, two more deaths in Vancouver region

Positive tests found in Surrey, Langley long-term care facilities

‘Now is not the time to bag that peak’: BCSAR manager discourages risky outdoor adventures

Call volumes are not going down, even as the COVID-19 pandemic persists

Food Banks BC already seeing surge in demand due to COVID-19 pandemic

Executive director Laura Lansink said they expect applications will keep increasing

Nanaimo couple caught aboard cruise ship with four dead and COVID-19 present

Four ‘older guests’ have died on Holland America’s Zaandam; cruise line confirms two COVID-19 cases

Frontline workers receiving COVID-19 isolation exemptions prompt concerns

Provincial Health Authority staff exempt from self-isolation upon return from international travel

Most Read