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UCP leadership hopefuls causing separation anxiety

Danielle Smith says Alberta needs more power and more independence from Ottawa.
The perceived front-runner to win the United Conservative Party leadership race, and succeed Jason Kenney as premier, has been campaigning on her proposed Alberta sovereignty act, which she says will essentially give Alberta the option of ignoring federal laws and regulations that interfere with the province's best interests.
Martin Olszynski, with the University of Calgary's law faculty, says it would never work.
"It's totally unconstitutional. It is completely, totally incompatible with both our Constitution, and also with just our basic form of government," he said.
"And in particular, what I'm referring to there is the separation of powers — the idea that we have separate branches in government. That's for a reason — it's there to ensure that we have checks and balances."
As the race to succeed Kenney heats up, candidates appear to share a common target — Ottawa.
They're decrying the federal government's control when it comes to the energy sector, equalization payments, health care and policing, just to name a few.
But the business community says alienating Ottawa will also alienate investment and desperately needed workers.
"We have so many jobs that are open," said Deborah Yedlin with the Calgary Chamber of Commerce.
"We are looking for that younger talent cohort, and they are very, very focused on what health care looks like, what education looks like, what (are) the values of the jurisdiction that they want to move to (to) take a job.
"It's not just about the money — it's about the values represented by the place that they're gonna move to."
Yedlin also says instability scares off investment, and that poor relationships between different levels of government could hurt Alberta's economy. Top Stories

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