Rachel Notley rides stunning orange wave in Alberta – by Tim Harper (Toronto Star – May 6, 2015)

The Toronto Star has the largest circulation in Canada. The paper has an enormous impact on federal and Ontario politics as well as shaping public opinion.

Alberta goes NDP in a sweep that ranks with the most seismic shifts in Canadian political history.

Voters in Alberta made history Tuesday night — and they sealed it with an exclamation point. Rachel Notley and her New Democrats secured a majority victory in an election that was supposed to be a stroll in the park for a powerful Progressive Conservative dynasty that had all but swallowed up its opposition in the province.

Instead, Jim Prentice rolled the dice on an early election and has found his own place in Canadian political lore. Albertans gave the middle finger to 44 years of unbroken rule and Prentice resigned, both as party leader and MLA, riding sadly into the prairie night.

The former Stephen Harper cabinet minister who was once thought to be a potential Harper successor, is the man who squandered a dynasty with staying power never before seen in this country. Ultimately, it sputtered and died, succumbing to the twin diseases of entitlement and hubris. The party sat in third place behind Wildrose, its future very much a question mark.

The scope and depth of this change — one that will be felt across the country and shake expectations in this autumn’s federal election — is difficult to digest.

On a personal level, Notley’s stunning victory carries with it a special poignancy.

She has completed the journey of her father, Grant, who spent years building this party before he was killed in a plane crash more than three decades ago when she was 20.

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