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Red Deer-Lacombe MP named hunting, angling, conservation critic

Calkins one of 71 critics and associate critics named by Conservative Party leader Wednesday

Red Deer-Lacombe MP Blaine Calkins is one of 51 MPs tapped for a critic post by Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre.

“I am honoured to be given the significant role and responsibility, and to continue serving Canadians and my community of Red Deer-Lacombe in the new role as Conservative Shadow Minister for Hunting, Angling and Conservation,” Calkins posted on Facebook on Wednesday afternoon.

Poilievre also named 20 MPs to be “associate critics,” which means 71 of the party’s 117 other MPs were named as critics. Red Deer-Mountain View MP Earl Dreeshen was not among them.

Calkins said on Facebook that his party, led by Poilievre will be “working hard to protect the outdoor way of life. By having a seat at the Shadow Cabinet table, I will ensure that conservation and our heritage sports are always considered in every decision.

“I’m pleased that Pierre Poilievre recognizes the outdoor community for their valuable contributions to conservation and our economy! Conservatives will be engaging everyone in Canada who wants to ensure that we have abundance of our renewable resources for generations to come!”

Before his political career, Calkins was a fisheries technician for Alberta Fish and Wildlife, a park ranger for Alberta Parks Service and a national park warden for Parks Canada. He helped found and is chair of the Conservative Hunting and Angling Caucus, which aims to ensure that hunters, anglers, trappers and all other outdoors people are represented in the party and parliament.

Calkins said he “will be reaching out to as many Canadians as I can who wants to have a say about our wild spaces and waters and working towards a future that holds promise for our fish and wildlife, and our people!

“Holding the government to account on this significant file, we will be working in partnership with the provincial, territorial, indigenous bodies, and local stakeholders across Canada. This will be a priority going forward!”

Poilievre unveiled his picks more than a month after winning the Conservative leadership race.

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