2008 Alberta Election: Nominations are Closed

By Marco Navarro-Genie on Feb 19, 2008

Candidate nominations for the present general election in Alberta closed yesterday. The biggest news (again) is that Elections Alberta does not make it very friendly for people to use their data (A nice printable file, if not a downloadable spreadsheet file, would make the lives of people in the media a bit easier).

The New Democrats and the Progressive Conservatives are presenting candidates in all 83 ridings. The Liberals, surprisingly, are not running a candidate in Peace River. The Green Party has augmented its team to 79 for this election, up from 46 in 2004. They’ll be absent in Dunvegan-Central Peace, Peace River, Lac La Biche-St. Paul, and Whitecourt-Ste. Anne.

About their absence in Peace River the Liberals will probably say that it’s not a big deal: someone likely didn’t get the papers in on time. Social Credit (Socreds) are not running a candidate there this year and the Greens have still not found someone to run for them in the riding. It’s a three-way race between Conservatives, New Democrats and the new arrivals, the Wildrose-Alliance. That makes it now one of the seats to watch if for no other reason that there is no Liberal candidate.

The Liberal absence is likely going to boost the competitiveness of the NDP, but their vote (546) combined to that of the Liberals in 2004 (1092) is just better than half of what the Conservatives received (2884). The Alliance in its previous manifestation received 537 votes. Their best growth potential rests with the Socred votes, all 194 of them. It's unlikely that the seat will change hands.

The Wildrose-Alliance is fielding 63 candidates. Technically it’s a new party, born just a few weeks ago. In that sense, a 63-name list is somewhat impressive. They are down from the full 83 names that the Alliance presented in its previous incarnation at the last election.

The Separation Party is down from 10 to only one candidate, and the once-mighty Social Credit dropped from 43 candidates to 8. The Communist Party is still giving the public an alternative in two ridings, but their scope is expanding: both ridings used to be in Edmonton. Now, they are running one candidate in Calgary’s North East.

Two weeks to go. The party leaders’ debate takes place this week.

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