Conservative incumbent Kevin Sorenson continued his electoral dominance in Crowfoot riding, winning a fifth straight landslide victory on Monday.
The auctioneer and farmer from Killam led early and never looked back and was poised to pick up around 84 per cent of the popular vote. With 240 out of 258 polls reporting, Sorenson had 40,351 votes, well ahead of second-place New Democratic Party candidate Ellen Parker’s 4,394.
Green Party candidate Konrad Schellenberg was at 1,569, Liberal Omar Harb 1,121, Independent John C. Turner at 472 and Christian Heritage Party of Canada Gerard Groenendijk at 186.
For Sorenson, the big thrill of the night was watching his party win the elusive majority.
“Wow. I’ll tell you this ranks right up there with the first win I ever had in 2000,” he said from Strathmore, where he was celebrating with friends, family and supporters. “Seeing the prime minister rewarded with a majority after all the hard work he has done, I’m so happy for him.”
The Conservatives intend to keep to the same program they have been following, he said. “We’ll bring back a budget very similar to the budget that we had. And it will be another budget that will be good for our economy.”
There will be no tax increases and the government will commit to its goal of working back towards a balanced budget and strengthening the country’s economy.
The strong showing by the NDP and its move into official Opposition status will create an interesting dynamic. “There is a great divide between their philosophy and our philosophy. Theirs is one of tax and spend and ours is one of balanced budgets and investment in the economy and bringing (the budget) back to a balance.”
Quebec’s abandonment of the Bloc Québécois was another big story of the night, he said. “This is a great night for Canada. It’s a great testament to see that people are saying yes to Canada, yes to a strong country.”
NDP candidate Ellen Parker finished second to Sorenson for the third election in a row.
“We’re growing. That’s the main thing,” said Parker, who said she got a lot of positive feedback at the doorstep as she campaigned.
She was pleased to see the nation’s electoral map filled with orange as the party made a historic breakthrough.
“We knew we were doing the work. It’s just really nice to see the fruits of our labour coming back,” said the educator and activist from her home in Camrose. “It’s kind of like a good harvest day.”
The party’s newfound position as official Opposition will allow it to exert its influence and ensure that there are more health professionals for communities, better pensions and more affordable lives for Canadians.
Independent candidate John C. Turner finished back in the pack, but enjoyed the campaign.
“It’s been a good experience,” he said from his home in Munson. “I learned a lot obviously.”
A small-c conservative, Turner is not sorry to see the Tory success. “It’s a majority, so now the government can govern.”
Prime Minister Stephen Harper must now address some unfulfilled past promises, such as Senate reform, he said.