December 21, 2018
I had one of the most inspiring days of my political life this week in Nisku, Alberta.
I was there as an endless line of trucks rolled through town in a show of support for Alberta’s energy sector. The convoy stretched back almost 22 kilometres, with hundreds of men and women making their voices heard loud and clear. Heading to a townhall meeting to talk to these struggling workers, I got out of my car and walked the rest of the way.
It was emotional. There’s a lot of anger, and it’s justified. People have lost jobs. Families have been broken up. The pain is real, but it’s going unaddressed by Justin Trudeau’s government. That’s why so many hardworking Canadians came out with a single message for Justin Trudeau: They don’t want his handouts. They want to go back to work.
I went to Alberta this week to respond to this impassioned plea for help. I went to look these men and women in the eye, and tell them that we’re with them, and we’re fighting for them. Not just Conservatives, but people from across the country that understand how important our energy sector is to Canada’s economy. They’re not alone.
Everyone in Nisku understood why they were there, and why the situation in Canada’s energy sector is so grim.
Justin Trudeau is trying to phase out their jobs. An industry that has sustained families and given them their livelihood for generations is being shut down by a prime minister who no longer hides his disdain for their work. In just three years, Trudeau has killed two major pipeline projects, and thrown $4.5 billion in taxpayer money into another that he can’t build. Meanwhile, his government’s Bill C-69 will put the energy sector out of business for good by ensuring that no pipeline project will see the light of day – ever again.
The consequences of Trudeau’s disastrous policies are felt most strongly in Alberta but will affect every part of Canada. Our national economy is losing billions of dollars because we don’t have enough pipeline capacity to get our resources to those who want to buy them. Canadian oil is now selling at a major discount, costing us jobs and investment. That is why Alberta’s government took the drastic step of cutting production, and why the ultimate responsibility for that move lies with Justin Trudeau. His pipeline vetoes, carbon taxes and added red tape are the cause of this lack of pipeline capacity, and the dire consequences that have followed.
The prosperity that once flowed from Alberta’s energy sector to communities across our country is a distant memory under Justin Trudeau.
At the same time, all he’s offered suffering workers and their families is a small government handout. That money might feed families for a few weeks, but the pipelines that get Canadian energy to markets will feed us all for a generation.
With Justin Trudeau doubling down on his destructive carbon tax and rejecting every attempt to revive struggling pipeline projects, it is clear that he will never take any meaningful step to offer help.
That’s why I outlined my Conservative plan to get out energy sector back on track. When Conservatives form government we are going to cancel the carbon tax, and repeal Bill C-69. But that’s just our first step. We will also establish firm timelines for pipeline approvals, invoke constitutional authority to build major projects, and eliminate foreign interference in the approvals process.
Justin Trudeau has done historic damage to Canada’s energy sector. And after this week, everyone understands that it’s going to take a change of government to put an end to this crisis and get our energy sector back to work.
Hon. Andrew Scheer
Leader of Canada’s Conservatives