The Friday before a long weekend is always a government’s favourite time to release news they don’t want you to hear.
This last long weekend, though, the federal government took it up another notch, with an additional layer of distraction added into the mix.
First, the long-awaited Emergencies Act Inquiry report was released earlier than expected.
Then, while everyone was preoccupied with dissecting that hefty document, the federal government quietly unveiled its "Sustainable Jobs Plan".
You might remember, not so long ago, that federal Natural Resources Minister, Jonathan Wilkinson, announced that the federal Liberal government would soon be rolling out its plan for a “Just Transition.”
This is the “Just Transition” plan that the federal NDP insisted be included in the “confidence and supply agreement” that is currently propping up Justin Trudeau’s minority government.
Then, an internal government memo was made public, suggesting that hundreds of thousands of jobs will be lost in this "transition" - particularly in western Canada.
Earlier this week, I was invited on to the "Darcy Gerow Podcast".
We had a long chat about the journey Project Confederation has been on so far, as well as our plans for the future.
The episode was an in-depth discussion on how recent events are shaping political discourse on Confederation and the Constitution, and how our team is on the cutting edge of those discussions.
With just a few days left until we find out who the next Premier of Alberta will be, I was pleased to be invited on the "Grey Matter" podcast to talk about the impact western alienation has had on the leadership race, the policies of the leading candidates, and what this means for the chances of Alberta successfully achieving greater independence - whether that be inside or outside of Canada.
You can listen to the full podcast episode now, here:
On Thursday, Project Confederation and I were featured in a front-page National Post column addressing western alienation and how this topic has come to dominate the current United Conservative Party leadership race.
The article is a deep dive into the relationship between western alienation and the current political situation in Alberta, but Post columnist Tyler Dawson was particularly interested in my perspective on how the issues around western alienation have escalated to this point.
In case you're not a subscriber, I've included a few highlights from the piece below.
I don't know about you, but I’ve noticed a definite shift in the tone of conversations around western alienation and fairness for Alberta.
The lack of progress on a fair deal in recent years has actually propelled the conversation forward.
The calls for action have become greater and the tactical conversation has become more serious, as Ottawa has not stopped its assault on our industries.
If there was one major takeaway from last night's UCP leadership debate, it was that Alberta's place in Confederation remains the most prominent topic of discussion in this race.
And all the candidates seemed to agree: Ottawa needs to stay in its lane.
Most of the candidates made positive statements about a number of issues that we have been promoting at Project Confederation - abolishing equalization, an Alberta pension plan and police force, the importance of Alberta controlling our own natural resources, and more.
The main disagreement, actually, was the best approach to take.
Last week, there was a story in the news that, at first glance, may seem unrelated to Alberta's fight for fairness.
However, when we dug into the details, we realized that it could have major implications for our province and our relationship with Ottawa.
On the last day of May, British Columbia Minister of Mental Health and Addictions, Sheila Malcolmson, and her federal equivalent, Carolyn Bennett, held a joint press conference in Vancouver to announce that the federal government would be giving the British Columbia government an exemption from the enforcement of Canada’s federal drug policy.
On Tuesday, the Alberta Court of Appeal ruled 4-1 that the federal government overstepped its jurisdiction with the Impact Assessment Act - better known as Bill C-69.
The decision is not binding, and the federal government has already announced that they will appeal the decision, meaning that we're headed for another Supreme Court battle between Alberta and Ottawa.
We’ve been here before - the lyrics to Whitesnake’s 1982 hit song, Here I Go Again, come to mind:
Keystone XL? Cancelled.
Energy East? Cancelled.
Northern Gateway? Cancelled.
Teck Resources? Cancelled.
Pretty much anything out east? Approved!