3 Edmonton ridings to watch on election night

Albertans have a pattern of electing Conservative MPs but the outcome of three Edmonton ridings may provide some drama when the polls close tonight. 

The NDP is hoping to hang on Edmonton Strathcona, its only seat in Alberta. 

In Edmonton Mill Woods and Edmonton Centre, Liberal incumbents are facing the Conservative opponents they beat by close margins in 2015.

Amarjeet Sohi, who was the natural resources minister in Justin Trudeau’s cabinet, is being challenged by Conservative candidate Tim Uppal in Edmonton Mill Woods.

The race in 2015 was so close it had to go to a judicial recount, with Sohi winning by 92 votes. As the minister in charge of pipelines and resource development, Sohi has faced criticism over bills C-69 and C-48, both vehemently opposed by a provincial United Conservative government that believes they will hurt Alberta’s resource industry. 

Uppal has had to weather a couple of controversies during the campaign. He revealed he will remain living in Ottawa even if he wins on Oct. 21. Uppal moved his family to the national capital in 2008 when he was first elected the MP for Edmonton Sherwood Park. 

Uppal also denied allegations he was involved with a voting kiosk set up in Edmonton by Jason Kenney’s team in the 2017 United Conservative Party leadership race.

Tanya Herbert of the Green Party, Nigel Logan of the NDP, Don Melanson of the Christian Heritage Party and Annie Young of the People’s Party of Canada are also running in Edmonton Mill Woods. 

Swing ridings 

Liberal Randy Boissonnault is seeking a second term in Edmonton Centre, a riding he won by 1,200 votes in 2015. 

Conservative James Cumming, who placed second, is running against Boissonnault again. Edmonton Centre has swung back and forth between Liberal and Conservative candidates over the past two decades.

Prior to Boissonnault, the riding was represented for nine years by by Conservative Laurie Hawn.

Katherine Swampy of the NDP, Grad Murray of the Green Party, Peggy Morton of the Marxist-Leninist Party, Donovan Eckstrom of the Rhinoceros Party, Paul Hookam from the People’s Party of Canada, and Independent Adil Pirbhai are also on the ballot in Edmonton Centre.

Edmonton Strathcona could elect a Conservative MP even though Linda Duncan held the seat as the only NDP MP in Alberta from 2008 to 2015.

Duncan decided not to run this election, so the seat is open. Heather McPherson is hoping to keep the riding in NDP hands but the Liberals have high hopes for their candidate, Eleanor Olszewski. 

Olszewski introduced Trudeau at a rally held during his only visit to Edmonton in the first week of the campaign.

Michael Kalmanovitch shook up the race last week when he told his supporters to vote for McPherson because he didn’t think he had a chance of winning. The Green Party promptly removed him as a candidate and party member. 

The federal riding of Edmonton Strathcona has a history of electing Conservatives. Rahim Jaffer of the CPC preceded Duncan as MP. 

Sam Lilly is the Conservative candidate in 2019. There are three other people running in Edmonton Strathcona: Naomi Rankin of the Communist Party, Dougal MacDonald of the Marxist-Leninist Party and Ian Cameron of the People’s Party of Canada.

Polls are open from 7:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Monday. 

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