Stelmach says the Liberals won the Calgary-Elbow seat in a byelection Tuesday because the city's voters are grumpy over growth pressures caused by a huge influx of new residents. The premier says it's unfortunate that 36,000 people have moved into Alberta over the last five months, driving up rents and creating a greater need for new roads, schools and health facilities.
Right-o, blame 'immigrants' to Alberta for the problems, even if they are fellow internally migrating Canadians from the East. At the same time claiming to need foreign workers to make up for the labour shortages in the province. But at least they are temporary you don't need to feed and house slave labour, no wait you do.
Stelmach was in cabinet before he was Premier at like the rest of the tired Tories he refuses to take responsibility for losing the byelection or the lack of planning for the boom,or the choking off of infrastructure funding for a decade. And he even has the temerity to blame them for the lack of apartments and rent gouging by Real Estate Income Trusts (REIT).Ed sounds just like good old Ralph and a lot like Jacques Parizeau after he lost the Referendum.
Calgary Elbow was a referendum on Stelmach and his stay the course gang. He lost a solid blue seat that was held by his predecessor.
But the loss of Calgary-Elbow should concern the premier, said University of Calgary political scientist David Taras.
"This was the premier's riding - this is a riding that was rock solid, and now it's fallen," he said.
"The argument is, if Elbow can fall, what Tory seat is safe in Calgary?"
"What a slap in the face for the Conservatives," said Keith Brownsey, who teaches political science at Calgary's Mount Royal College. "It's been Conservative since its inception. It should've been a cakewalk."
Tuesday's result in Calgary appeared to echo recent polls suggesting that Tory efforts to handle Alberta's hyper-inflated economy have not found favour.
A Leger Marketing poll of more than 900 Albertans in late May suggested support for the Tories has slipped well under 50 per cent and in Calgary has dropped 27 points to 40 per cent. Those findings mirrored the results of a Cameron Strategy poll of more than 900 Albertans over roughly the same period.
Even King Ralph was almost struck speechless; "I never lost an election," said Klein, winner of three municipal races in his days as Calgary mayor and four straight majority romps as premier.
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