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Drag out the vote: Queens encourage participation in Alberta election 2019

Calgary drag queens strutted to city hall to participate in advance Alberta election polls on Wednesday.
Calgary drag queens strutted to city hall to participate in advance Alberta election polls on Wednesday. Global News

With bold wigs and faces full of makeup, drag queens strutted to city hall in Calgary on Wednesday with one message: vote in Alberta’s election.

Drag performers cast ballots in advance polls to encourage people to exercise their democratic rights and remind them of the chance to vote early.

READ MORE: Elections Alberta says a whopping 140,000 Albertans cast a ballot on Day 1 of advance polling

New election rules allow Albertans to vote at any polling station in the province regardless of their home riding during advance polls.

Calgary drag queens strutted to city hall to participate in advance Alberta election polls on Wednesday.
Calgary drag queens strutted to city hall to participate in advance Alberta election polls on Wednesday. Global News

Vanta Blaque, a.k.a. Sam Brown, co-organized the first-ever event and wants everyone to vote, no matter where they sit on the political spectrum.

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“[This election] has a large impact on the LGBTQ+ community, for families and young people,” Blaque said.

“Drag is so much more than just lip-syncing and twirling around on TV — and those are very important aspects of the art, but there’s so much more and it is fundamentally a political movement and activism,” Blaque added.

“There’s been so much improvement, but even in our lifetime, people have been straight-up murdered for being who they are.

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“It’s really incredible that today we can be here in the middle of downtown in full drag doing this.”

Calgary drag queens, including Vanta Blaque with the green hair, strutted to city hall to participate in advance Alberta election polls on Wednesday.
Calgary drag queens, including Vanta Blaque with the green hair, strutted to city hall to participate in advance Alberta election polls on Wednesday. Global News

As long as voters have two pieces of identification from the authorized list, they can vote while in full drag.

Blaque said their display motivates people to vote in a fun, creative, accessible way.

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“Educate yourselves on all issues,” Blaque said. “Never stop learning about the different issues.

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“As amazingly far as we have come, as members of the queer community and as young people, there’s still so much more that can and needs to be done.”

READ MORE: Alberta election cheat sheet: A last-minute voter’s guide

Early voting runs April 9 to 13.

Election day is April 16.

Calgary drag queens strutted to city hall to participate in advance Alberta election polls on Wednesday.
Calgary drag queens strutted to city hall to participate in advance Alberta election polls on Wednesday. Global News