The next Canadian federal election will take place on Monday, October 21, 2019. With each election cycle comes the possibility of new Members of Parliament (MPs), new Ministers and a new Prime Minister.
Electoral boundaries, which change every 10 years on the federal level, were last changed in 2012, in time for the 2015 federal election. Those same boundaries remain in place, meaning all producers will remain in their existing constituencies for the 2019 election.
Typically, candidates who currently occupy their seats in Parliament (known as incumbents) have a likelier chance of being re-elected compared to new candidates. In 2019, two MPs in constituencies where our producers live are not seeking re-election. Those individuals, ranked by producer population in their respective constituencies, are:
- Kevin Sorenson, MP for Battle River-Crowfoot (123 producers)
- Jim Eglinski, MP for Yellowhead (67 producers)
For the other 14 predominately rural constituencies in the province where our producers live, an incumbent will be running in 2019. In these constituencies, all incumbents are Conservatives.
Since becoming Prime Minister in 2015, Justin Trudeau increased the size of Canada’s cabinet from 30 to 35 ministers. Only one of these 35 current ministers represents an Alberta constituency: Amarjeet Sohi, MP for Edmonton Mill Woods and Minister of Natural Resources.
Other ministries of interest to Alberta pork producers include Agriculture and Agri-Food (Marie-Claude Bibeau, Quebec), Employment, Workforce, and Labour (Patricia Hajdu, Ontario), Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship (Ahmed Hussen, Ontario), International Trade Diversification (Jim Carr, Manitoba), Rural Economic Development (Bernadette Jordan, Nova Scotia) and Small Business and Export Promotion (Mary Ng, Ontario).
If the Liberal Party of Canada should form the next government, it’s likely a status quo scenario may take place in many of the ministries of interest—meaning, little to no change of personnel. In that case, Alberta’s pork producers would have comparatively poor leverage to directly influence these positions, since these ministers are from out-of-province.
However, if the Conservative Party of Canada or another party should form the next government, it would seem likely the incoming Prime Minister’s cabinet would include additional representation from Alberta, due to historical precedent (Conservative support) and fair representation (Alberta has 11 per cent of Canada’s population and only three per cent of its ministers).
Canada’s Official Opposition assigns critic portfolios to their MPs, as a way of mirroring and keeping in check cabinet members. This is known as the “shadow cabinet.” Rural Alberta MPs with critic portfolios of interest include:
- John Barlow, MP for Foothills (Employment, Workforce Development and Labour)
- Shannon Stubbs, MP for Lakeland (Natural Resources)
- Blake Richards, MP for Banff Airdrie (Small Business and Export Promotion and Tourism)
Because these three MPs are incumbent candidates, there is a reasonable possibility they could become cabinet ministers in their respective portfolios if the Conservatives win the election. Taken together, these MPs currently represent 139 of 786 registered Alberta pork producers.
For more information on party platforms, visit the websites of the Conservative Party of Canada, Green Party of Canada, Liberal Party of Canada, New Democratic Party of Canada and People’s Party of Canada.
Keep an eye out for upcoming Alberta Pork articles and be sure to pay attention to news and social media leading up to the election.
If you would like more information on the 2019 Canadian federal election, contact Andrew Heck, Communication Programs Coordinator, Alberta Pork by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 780-491-3527, toll-free at 1-877-247-PORK (7675).