Conservatives dominate in central Alberta
Incumbent Blaine Calkins won in Red Deer Lacombe with around 80 per cent of the votes. Oct. 21, 2019. (CTV News Edmonton)
RED DEER -- Red Deer Lacombe and Red Deer Mountain View voters sent a strong message Monday, with both Conservative incumbents winning around 80 per cent of the vote.
"It's very rewarding. All of things we've done, all of the doors that we knocked on, the folks that we've talked to, it couldn't be better," said Red Deer Mountain View candidate Earl Dreeshen.
“I'm taking the small victories I can tonight on behalf of Alberta and that is Justin Trudeau will not be able to do anything in the House of Commons without somebody else's help or support, which means he is going to have to start listening to other parts of Canada," said Red Deer Lacombe candidate Blaine Calkins.
In Red Deer Mountain View, the NDP's Logan Garbanewski took home seven per cent of votes, Liberal Gary Tremblay received around 6 per cent, People's Party of Canada candidate Paul Mitchell received nearly four per cent and the Green's Conner Borle walked away with three per cent.
In Red Deer Lacombe, the NDP's Lauren Pezzella received nearly nine per cent of the votes, Liberal Tiffany Rose receive just over five per cent of the votes, the PPC's Laura Lynn Thompson took home almost four per cent while Green Party candidate Sarah Palmer got just over two per cent.
Both Dreeshen and Calkins were obviously upset with the Liberal party winning a minority government, but were happy with the gains made by the Conservatives.
“It's not the result that I think everybody in the room was looking for, but it's not the worst case scenario. Justin Trudeau no longer has the ability to do whatever he wants unilaterally in the country," said Calkins. "We're going to send down a very strong contingent once again from Alberta to stand up for what's important here, jobs, economic prosperity, growth and being treated as full and equal partners in this confederation."
“It's certainly disappointing because we know that we've had such a great message, which is probably why our popular vote is higher than theirs is," said Dreeshen.
The conservative won the popular vote by 1.3 per cent, or 243,000 votes.
The attention for the two now shifts to getting pipelines built. Dreeshen and Calkins expressed willingness to work with the Liberal government in order to get construction started on the Trans Mountain Pipeline.
"Quite frankly, I think it's important that people realize that the natural resources that we have and the wealth is what builds our hospitals, our schools, our social safety net," said Dreeshen. "That's where Canada's strength comes from, it's our natural resources, the natural resource development and quite frankly, the most ethically produced resources in the world."
"This pipeline is in the national interest, and we're going to be asking him, I'm going to be asking him to get the shovels in the ground right away. We have waited long enough," said Calkins.
Students in Red Deer Catholic and Public schools had the chance to have their say in the election as well by participating in a student vote. Kids from Grades 6 to 9 were able to cast a ballot for a candidate in their school's riding. Earl Dreeshen won in his riding with 54 per cent of the votes, while Blaine Calkins took home just over 57 per cent.
"Democracy only works if we use our voice and it only works if we participate, so the biggest thing is kind of teaching students that they have a say and their voice will be heard," said St. Thomas Aquinas teacher Dana Blair.
Over 10,500 student votes were cast.