Decision day in Alberta: Voters head to polls in provincial election

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Mr Kenney based his campaign on blaming the likes of Mr Trudeau for not standing up for Albertans and taking its oil and gas for granted.

Alberta NDP Leader Rachel Notley says she will stay on to lead her party in Opposition.

Tracy Allard won the Grande Prairie riding, with her United Conservative counterpart Travis Toews picking up the victory in Grande Prairie-Wapiti.

Notley, speaking to supporters at her Edmonton headquarters, touted her government's accomplishments and said she will stay on as NDP leader. In all, 165,527 ballots were cast, with all but 6,000 valid.

Notley told supporters her government had done a tough and hard job, adding, "Today Alberta is a better place because of it".

Alberta Party leader Stephen Mandel speaks to the media after the Alberta Leaders Debate in Edmonton, Alta., on Thursday, April 4, 2019.

Kenney, a former cabinet minister in Stephen Harper's Conservative government, won the leadership of the Alberta Progressive Conservative party in 2016 before leading the PCs into a successful 2017 merger with the Wildrose Party.

He takes the top job after winning on a jobs, jobs, jobs message and a promise to wage war on all who oppose Alberta's oil and gas industry, particularly Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

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Notley also tried to make Kenney's character an issue.

Rempel was also optimistic about what a Kenney victory would mean for federal-provincial relations, particularly in the conservative-fuelled fight against the carbon tax.

In the previous two decades, the NDP had never been able to elect more than four MLAs, and had been shut out of Calgary since the 1980s. Ontario Premier Doug Ford, whose province is one of three challenging the federal carbon tax, told reporters Tuesday that he hopes Kenney wins the election.

Nearly 700,000 people voted early in malls, airports, recreation centres, public buildings and an Ikea store.

The four-week campaign focused on personal attacks and on Alberta's fragile economy, which has been struggling with sluggish oil prices.

He has promised to repeal the NDP increase on corporate income tax and drop it to eight per cent. A $3.7-billion plan to lease rail cars to ship more oil is to be cancelled.

"While a potential repeal would have a large impact on consumer electricity bills, we expect the impact to producers would be modest as the carbon tax is mostly a pass through. though some producers may choose to revisit their goal and gas conversion plans as a reduction in the carbon tax may make the economics of high emitter facilities more attractive for longer", the CIBC report said.

For Kenney, the first step is most likely a nap. He has said he will proclaim a law passed by Notley's government but never proclaimed.

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