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The Alberta Politics Quiz 2019: How well do you remember the year that was at the legislature? – Edmonton Journal

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Alberta Premier-Designate Jason Kenney arrives outside the Alberta Legislature building in Edmonton on Wednesday April 17, 2019 for a news conference, the day after his United Conservative Party was elected to govern the province.


Larry Wong / POSTMEDIA NETWORK

Whoever said politics is boring couldn’t have been referring to 2019 in Alberta, which kept us invariably engaged, entertained, horrified and angry — but overwhelmed most of all. How well did you manage to keep track of all the news? Take our annual multiple choice quiz to see if you’re a politics ace or amateur.

1. What was the UCP’s campaign slogan during the provincial election?

a. We can’t possibly be as bad as the NDP.

b. Make Alberta Great Again.

c. Strong and Free.

d. Conservatism. You missed us, right?

e. Friends of oil and gaslighting.

2. What was the NDP’s campaign slogan during the provincial election?

a. Everyone deserves a second chance.

b. Rachel Notley. Fighting for you.

c. Our leader is more popular than your leader.

d. Orange you glad you elected us in 2015?

e. Deficits come and go. Carbon taxes should be forever.

3. What is thetruthaboutjasonkenney?

a. No one knows. It’s a secret.

b. An NDP attack website highlighting Kenney’s controversial views and alleged misdeeds.

c. A reality show that never made it past the pilot.

d. I could tell you, but then I’d have to kill you.

e. The RCMP might shed some light on this, when their investigation into the 2017 UCP leadership campaign wraps up.

4. While NDP MLA Janis Irwin was a $100,000 lottery winner last spring, UCP House Leader Jason Nixon also won something unexpected. What was it?

a. 82 per cent of the vote in his riding.

b. The honour of being one of four Jasons in the UCP cabinet.

c. Another Nixon in the legislature (his brother Jeremy was also elected).

d. The fun of leading the UCP government’s climate change efforts.

e. A goat.

5. Who, or what, interrupted Prime Minister Justin Trudeau during a May news conference in Edmonton?

a. A noisy Canada Goose.

b. A different kind of honking, from motorists upset that the PM’s motorcade was blocking traffic.

c. A premonition that the Liberals would lose all their Alberta seats.

d. A phone call from Donald Trump.

e. A crowd of hecklers.

6. After some public concern, a special prosecutor from Ontario was finally appointed in July to oversee the RCMP’s investigation of the 2017 UCP leadership race. Who is that prosecutor?

a. Justice Minister Doug Schweitzer won’t tell us.

b. The Alberta Crown Prosecution Service won’t tell us.

c. The Ontario government won’t tell us.

d. All of the above.

e. Is there really a prosecutor?

7. Who won the April 4 leaders’ debate during the provincial election?

a. Jason Kenney. Duh.

b. Rachel Notley, of course.

c. It was a tie between Stephen Mandel and David Khan.

d. All of them, according to claims put out by each of the parties after the debate.

e. Everyone tried their best and should get participation ribbons.

8. Name one thing that isn’t being studied by a government-appointed panel looking into the effects of Alberta supervised consumption sites.

a. The merits of supervised consumption sites.

b. Crime rates.

c. Social disorder.

d. Damage to businesses and property values.

e. Needle debris.

9. Immediately after their first-ever session came to an end last spring, much of the UCP caucus did what to celebrate?

a. Held a karaoke contest with the lieutenant-governor.

b. Took turns posing for goofy photos in the Speaker’s chair.

c. Splashed around in the legislature wading pool.

d. Had a long nap, after surviving several NDP filibusters.

e. Quietly crept back to their constituencies, since they had just passed legislation rolling back protections for gay-straight alliances.

10. What did the UCP say to alleviate criticism of Kenney’s decision to hand out earplugs during a late-night legislature session?

a. It was a “harmless and lighthearted attempt to boost government caucus morale.”

b. None of the UCP MLAs actually used the earplugs.

c. The earplugs were for only one MLA who has tinnitus.

d. All of the above.

e. The premier was right to mock the questionable oratory coming from the NDP.

Bonus: What did Rachel Notley call a “stampede of stupid”?

a. Kenney’s decision to book a $16,764 charter flight to carry conservative premiers and others from the Calgary Stampede to Saskatoon.

b. The federal government’s Bill C-48, the so-called tanker ban.

c. The UCP’s attempt to play innocent in firing the election commissioner.

d. Her own party’s ill-advised decision to condemn a $35,000 government liquor purchase, when in fact the sale was legitimate.

e. The Calgary Flames trading for Milan Lucic.

ANSWERS:

1. c. The party borrowed the phrase from Alberta’s official motto, and used it for a catchy song that played at all campaign events. The UCP also did well with the phrase “Jobs, Economy, Pipelines.”

2. b. NDP branding was almost entirely based around Notley, as the party tried to turn the campaign into a popularity contest between her and Jason Kenney.

3. b. The website was one of three such attack sites used by the NDP featuring unflattering images of Kenney, sensationalist headlines and blood red lettering.

4. e. While any of the answers could suffice, Nixon was stoked about winning a goat named Gus at a charity event. Nixon tweeted that Gus “wanted me to remind you that friends don’t let friends vote NDP.”

5. a. It seems even the birds in Alberta had no time for Trudeau’s message.

6. d. The Crown prosecution service has said identifying the prosecutor is “under the purview” of Ontario, which won’t provide a name.

7. d. Most observers agree there was no clear-cut winner in the debate, but that didn’t stop anyone from claiming victory.

8. a. In announcing the panel’s mandate, the government said it already knew enough about the benefits of the facilities.

9. c. The dip in the wading pool was partly a gag from Speaker Nathan Cooper, who told rookie MLAs it was a tradition.

10. d. The UCP used three different stories about the earplugs, but wouldn’t officially admit to what was likely the real motivation: mocking the NDP.

Bonus. b. Both Notley and Kenney have spoken forcefully against Bill C-48.

kgerein@postmedia.com

twitter.com/keithgerein

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Murphy says White House national security adviser should "stay out of politics" – Axios

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6 hours ago – Politics & Policy
Chris Murphy

Sen. Chris Murphy. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images.

Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) said on CNN’s “State of the Union” Sunday that White House national security adviser Robert O’Brien should “stay out of politics.”

Driving the news: O’Brien said on ABC News that it’s “no surprise” Russia has attempted to interfere in favor of Sen. Bernie Sanders in the Democratic primary because Sanders “honeymooned in Moscow.” Sanders said late last week that he was briefed about a month ago on Russia’s attempts to help his campaign and that he completely condemns Putin’s interference.

The big picture: A congressional briefing led by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence reportedly said that Russia had “developed a preference” for President Trump and was seeking to help his re-election campaign, in addition to Sanders’ primary bid.

  • O’Brien repeatedly said on the Sunday cable talk shows that he had not seen any intelligence to support this, despite Russia having interfered on Trump’s behalf in 2016.
  • Murphy countered on CNN: “What we know is that the Russians never stopped interfering in American politics. … They are weighing in over and over again in support of right-wing causes, in support of Donald Trump’s political agenda.”
  • “And of course it stands to reason that they want Donald Trump re-elected because he has been a gift to Russia,” Murphy added.

Go deeper: Trump misrepresents 2020 Russia briefing as Democratic “misinformation”

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Sunday Politics Recap: Nevada Results, Looking Ahead To The Next Democratic Debate – NPR

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We look at the results coming out of the Nevada caucuses, Russia’s attempts to interfere in Sen. Bernie Sanders’ campaign and what to expect from Tuesday’s Democratic debate.

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Hamburg votes amid German political unrest – Al Jazeera English

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Polls have opened in Germany’s city-state of Hamburg as voters pick a new regional assembly in an election that has been dominated by the issue of climate change.

Hamburg has been governed by a coalition of the centre-left Social Democrats and the environmentalist Green party for the last five years. They are the two leading parties, according to polls.

More:

Federal politics in Germany has appeared particularly chaotic in recent weeks, with a regional vote in the former communist east indirectly bringing down Chancellor Angela Merkel’s chosen successor.

Over the longer term, the progressive, ecologist Greens look set to replace the centre-left Social Democratic Party (SPD) as the main national rival to Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU) conservatives, with support for them surging last year and now almost twice as high as for the SPD.

But things are not so gloomy for the centre left in Hamburg, where despite the Greens’ gains, the SPD looks set to maintain its grip on the mayor’s seat.

In opinion polls in this wealthy “Free Hanseatic City” last week, support for the SPD was well above 30 percent, a lead of more than 10 points over the Greens and three times higher than the CDU.

“We have to hold our ground against the federal trend,” SPD lead candidate and incumbent Hamburg Mayor Peter Tschentscher, 54, told AFP news agency.

In part, the centre left has done so by adopting policies with a distinctly “green” feel, including a proposal to convert a huge coal power plant to natural gas to slash greenhouse emissions.

Meanwhile, the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) – which enjoys strong support in the east of the country – is struggling to gain ground in prosperous Hamburg where it could even fall short of the 5 percent hurdle to enter parliament.

At just below 3,000 euros ($3,258) per month, incomes in the port city are somewhat higher than the national average.

Havoc in Berlin

On Friday, the Greens’ national leader, Robert Habeck, said the prospect for the ecologists doubling their score in Hamburg from the last vote in 2015 was “phenomenal”, even if they fail to unseat the SPD’s Tschentscher.

Should the opinion polls prove correct, the port city will likely retain the “red-green” coalition that has ruled since 2011, sparing Berlin the political earthquakes provoked by other recent regional votes.

Earlier this month, Merkel’s conservatives were shaken by the apparent alliance of their regional branch in the eastern state Thuringia with the AfD party, voting in a liberal politician as state premier.

The breach of a historic political taboo provoked a nationwide outcry.

Germany’s FM warns of ‘right-wing terrorism’ threat

As a result, CDU leader and Merkel’s heir apparent, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, announced her resignation, throwing open the question of who will succeed the veteran chancellor following elections next year at the latest.

Meanwhile, the SPD’s failure to recover from disastrous showings in federal elections in 2017 and in subsequent state polls has seen nervous party members chew through multiple leaders.

The party finally settled on a duo of relative unknowns last year after a long and divisive selection process.

The pair, Norbert Walter-Borjans and Saskia Esken, have been notable by their absence from Hamburg campaign events.

No island

While Hamburg’s political makeup is unusual, events in the final week of campaigning showed that the port city is far from insulated from events in the rest of Germany and Europe.

On Friday, Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg joined a “Fridays for Future” demonstration in Hamburg attended by about 10,000 people, according to police.

Weekly marches across the country by the school strike movement last year helped force Berlin to raise its climate ambitions and fix a binding end to coal power generation by 2038 in law.

At the same time, support for the Greens has surged across the country.

Meanwhile, both the SPD and the Greens cancelled final campaign events on Thursday, after a gunman killed nine people with migrant backgrounds in the city of Hanau.

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