Loading articles...

Candidates face off in Calgary-Lougheed debate

Last Updated Dec 11, 2017 at 4:43 am MDT

Kendra Fowler

Nearly two hundred Calgarians packed into the Braeside Community Centre in the southwest Sunday night to listen to candidates in the Calgary-Lougheed by-election.

Voters brought up many topics in the forum including the economy, healthcare, the deficit and the carbon levy.

At times however, it seemed like a two-way debate between the United Conservative Party and the NDP.

UCP Leader Jason Kenney used his closing statement to rebut against NDP candidate Phillip Van Der Merwe.

“I’ve said the opposite of what he claims: we support the cancer hospital. We’ve been clear about it. We say we need sustained fiscal restraint not 20 per cent cuts, (and) they’re making things up to scare voters,” Kenney said.

Van Der Merwe said Kenney being on the defensive is a good sign for his campaign.

“I don’t care really how he tries to spin it: we have a $50 billion budget with $10 million in deficit and that is 20 per cent and whether you do it over in one year, or three years or two years it’s still 20 per cent cuts.”

Other candidates who took park were Liberal Leader David Khan who spoke about tax reform to help bring jobs back into the province.

“Those oil and gas companies are not hiring back all of those positions that they cut. There is a role in government for comprehensive tax reform so we can stimulate investment and create those jobs.”

Green Party representative Romy Tittel also attended the debate but Larry Heather, who is running as an Independent, stood outside because he was barred from the forum due to past behaviour.

Polls close on Thursday.