Liberal win fuels talk of Alberta separation

The Trudeau Liberal federal election win has fueled the separation movement in Alberta.

The VoteWexit Facebook page – whose motto is “The West Wants Out,” has more than 251,000 members as of Oct. 26.

Peter Downing, a former RCMP officer and soldier, says the Wexit movement wants Alberta Premier Jason Kenney to call a referendum on separation.

“There is already legal groundwork in place for matters such as these so it is feasible,” says the group online.

“Our system is broken, the East will continue to suck the West dry and will never agree to equal representation. At some point an abusive relationship needs to be put to an end.”

What the west wants

Downing said Alberta wants a referendum on separation and the implementation of the Alberta Firewall Protocol.

The separatist movement initially started with Alberta oil and gas workers who were frustrated with delays in pipeline projects.

WEB POLL: Should Alberta separate from Canada?

Then, in the Oct. 21 federal election, a blue wave swept over Alberta. All but one riding voted Conservative. The Liberals, however, formed a minority government after winning enough seats in Eastern Canada.

READ MORE: Blue wave sweeps Alberta but Liberals form minority government

A day after the election Premier Jason Kenney called on the federal Liberal government to address Alberta’s concerns about the energy sector and equalization.

Kenney sent a five-page letter to re-elected Prime Minister Justin Trudeau today.

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“I underscored that the deep frustration expressed by Albertans is very real,” said Kenney.

READ MORE: ‘Alberta voters sent the strongest message in our 114 years to Ottawa’ says Premier Kenney

Last week, Kenney said he didn’t think separation was the answer and told reporters Albertans shouldn’t let Trudeau’s policies force them out of Canada.

On Oct. 24 Downing urged Albertans to email Jason Kenney at calgary.lougheed@assembly.ab.ca to share their views.

Critics downplay, minimalize and mock the Wexit movement online.

Re-elected Conservative Calgary Nose Hill MP Michelle Rempel, however, said the rest of Canada needs to take the Wexit movement seriously.

“I think that would be very dangerous for the rest of the country to do or ignore,” she said. “It’s a real feeling that a lot of people have very justifiable reasons for.”

Trending on social media are #wexit #wexitalberta #albertaseparation.

One twitter user said, “Quebec has a separatist party. Indigenous people have many requests. Most provinces receive equalization payments. Then Alberta asks for some fairness, and the rest of Canada attacks them and says we’re whining.”

The Wexit movement is also strong in Saskatchewan.

Wexit rallies are planned for Nov. 2 in Edmonton, Nov. 16 in Calgary and Nov. 30 in Red Deer.

In addition, an online petition – started after the federal election calling for Alberta separation and a western alliance – has more than 100,000 signatures as of Oct. 26.

The petition on change.org – with more than 23,000 votes already – urges people to support the west, including Saskatchewan, Alberta., B.C. and Manitoba.

“The voices of Albertans can no longer be ignored,” says the petition on change.org.

“Alberta, you can shout from the top of your lungs from our highest mountain peak and nobody is going to hear you in Ottawa.”

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