Tomorrow is election day in Alberta. It looks like after 41 years the conservatives will no longer be in power. Usually this is something that would make me quite happy. However, there a very very good chance that if the conservatives are ousted it will be by the Wildrose party. This scares me. (In case you haven’t figured it out yet my political views are pretty liberal and in fact I am a staunch NDP supporter)
I personally find their party platform to be vague and undefined. They say they plan to “ensure conscience rights for marriage commissioners and health professionals.” Coming from a right wing political party I wonder what this means. Will this give marriage commissioners the right to refuse to perform same-sex marriages. Will catholic health care providers be able to say “Sorry I’m not going to prescribe birth control because it is against my beliefs”. Will it become the same as some Catholic hospitals in the states where they will not perform a D&C on a woman having a miscarriage because they believe it’s the same as an abortion. This is also a party who, when it was found out that one of it’s members running for election posted a very anti gay blog, did nothing about it. The leader of party admitted that she knew about this candidates personal and political views but doesn’t think that a person’s religious or personal views have a bearing on their politics. EXCUSE ME? The very basis of ones political views usually lies in their personal beliefs. I am pro-choice, pro-gay marriage, against the death penalty. I believe in social programs to give a hand up and I’m all for gun control. With personal views like that I would never call myself a conservative. If I were a politician I would align myself with a party that holds the same beliefs.
That aside I believe that their election platforms are financially irresponsible. They have promised everyone in Alberta $300 a year from oil revenue. That would cost the province just over 1 billion dollars a year. That is money that could be used for education, or health care, or helping low income families or seniors. I see it as a blatant attempt to try and buy the votes of the working class. But then again I’m biased, and more than a little cynical.
There has been a movement here in Alberta to convince those of us who normally vote liberal or NDP (which is admittedly a pretty futile practice, but one I still do) to vote for the PC’s. The idea is to keep the Wildrose out of power. It’s kind of a keep the devil you know kind of deal. It does sound appealing for half a milli-second. But I just can’t bring myself to do it. I have never voted conservative in my life and I don’t see that changing any time soon. Do I want the Wildrose in power? No. But I don’t want the PC’s in power either. I hold on to the hope that one day the balance of power will shift from the right to the left. I mean look at the last federal election, the NDP became the official opposition, something people never expected to happen. So tomorrow I will go and cast my vote, even if the party I vote for has no hope of winning.