Sydney Sharpe & Don Braid: Notley Nation

Rachel Notley’s dramatic triumph over Alberta’s Conservative regime was an early rumble before the Trudeau landslide.

Alberta has long been seen as politically paralyzed. But it has always been a cauldron of discontent, producing the Reform Party, the Wildrose movement, the modern Conservative Party of Canada, and Stephen Harper. Notley Nation tells how this pent-up energy exploded in an unexpected direction with an NDP victory that presaged the Trudeau Liberal win on the federal stage.

Stereotypes of redneck Alberta have long been at odds with the province’s progressive streak. The political upheaval that swept conservatism out of office in 2015 had shown its first tremors in Alberta five years earlier. Progressive mayors were elected in Calgary and Edmonton, and soon it became clear that the province’s PC government was falling out of touch with modern Alberta.

Notley Nation tells how the Alberta NDP unseated a forty-three-year-old Conservative dynasty that proved incapable of adapting to forces beyond its control or understanding. That wave soon spread across the country, sweeping Justin Trudeau into office.

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