Electoral test for Justin Trudeau: Alberta goes to the polls.

Alberta Legislative Building in EdmontonPeople in the Canadian Province of

Alberta

are going to the polls on Tuesday, April 16th. Since Canadians will vote in a general election later this year, and the Trudeau Liberal government has been hit by a

corruption scandal

which continues to threaten its chances for reelection, the vote in Alberta is seen by many analysts as the first major test for the Prime Minister’s current standing with the electorate; in all likelihood, voters will send a strong message of disapproval to the political class in

Ottawa .Rachel Notley after being sworn in alongside her cabinet as the 17th Premier of Alberta on May 24th, 2015.

Traditionally, the prairie state of Alberta was deemed to be the most profoundly conservative province in the country until, back in 2015, the left leaning

New Democratic Party

won the election, ending 44 years of uninterrupted Conservative rule. However, just after one term in office, prospects for winning a second term are not looking good. As Professor Lori Williams who teaches politics at Mount Royal University in Calgary

explains :

The economy is the most important issue for voters in this election, and the NDP government is blamed for not having delivered on its promises of reform. The overall economic picture is somewhat murky; the state is by no means in dire-straits, but the government fell short of meeting expectations. The downward trend in the polls comes despite the unwavering popularity of the state’s Premier

Rachel Notley.

The unpopularity of the federal government in Ottawa also aggravates Notley’s problems in turning the tide prior to polling day. Williams stresses that, with Conservative leader

Jason Kenney

winning the premiership on Tuesday, life for Trudeau will not become easier, particularly when it comes to pushing his policies on energy and the environment. Because the oil industry is part and parcel of Alberta’s economy, the Conservatives under Kenney’s leadership have already made clear that they will push back on Ottawa’s progressive policy agenda in this area. If the

polls

hold, though, a Kenney premiership is regrettably very likely indeed.

For more on Canadian politics read

here.

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