Each day this week, Global News will explore some of the issues that matter to Calgary voters as we approach the 2019 federal election in a new segment called Word on the Street.
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Mount Royal University political scientist Duane Bratt argues that climate change is the biggest predictor of party support, saying all you have to do to know how someone will vote in the Oct. 21 election is ask how they feel about climate change
“There is great polarization amongst the parties on the issue of climate change,” Bratt said.
“If you are an Albertan who supports the Conservative Party, who is male and living in rural Alberta, you are most likely to deny climate change. If you are female, living in Montreal, that supports the Green Party, the opposite applies.”
When it comes to energy, Bratt says the two highest-polling parties, the Liberals and Conservatives, both agree on wanting to see the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion built — which should work in the project’s favour.
“I recognize the concerns people have around Trans Mountain but I think a minority Liberal government could be propped up by the Conservatives, and a minority Conservative government could be propped up by the Liberals. In other words, the parties that represent about 85 per cent of the seats are going to be able to work together.”
According to Bratt, support of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion is one of the few areas related to Canada’s energy industry on which the Liberals and Conservatives seem to see eye to eye.
“Things like Bill C-69 and Bill-C48, unless you have a Scheer majority government, I think are going to stay,” he said. “Likewise, the federal carbon tax, unless it’s a Scheer majority, I think we are also going to see it in Alberta.”