The prairies have been appointed a special representative who will be reporting directly to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
During the Federal election, the prairies were swept up in a blue wave. In Alberta all but one of 34 elected Members of Parliament were Conservative candidates, one Edmonton riding was won by an NDP candidate.
In Saskatchewan, all 14 ridings were won by their respective conservative candidates. Half of Manitoba’s 14 ridings were won by Conservatives. The conservatives also took 17 of BC’s 42 seats.
With no Liberal representation in Alberta or Saskatchewan, the Prime Minister appointed Liberal MP Jim Carr as the Prime Minister’s envoy in the prairies.
“I’m in the happy position of having access to the Prime Minister as his special representative for the prairie,” Carr explained. “He appointed me to this role because he wanted to hear directly from me about my conversations and observations about the moment in the prairie west.”
Carr is a former Minister of Natural resources and a former Trade Minister, positions he says to give him a better understanding of the importance Alberta and Saskatchewan play in Canada.
“In four years travelling around the world, I was struck by just how much the world wants and needs what we have,” he said.
“Our natural resources, our energy, our agriculture, our value-added products, our immigration policy, our partnerships with indigenous peoples. Prairie Canada is looked upon by much of the world as a place that has and will continue to feed the world, literally.”
He is planning a trip out to Alberta and Saskatchewan in March where he’s planning to meet not only with politicians but communities as well.
“It’s my job to be the Prime Minister’s eyes, ears and voice in Prairie Canada. That means being in very close touch with the three prairie provinces at all levels, not only within government but within universities and communities,” Carr said.
“Talking about how prairie Canada will be so important not only as a driver of our own economy at home but also as part of Canada’s international brand.”
Carr said he understands how important this role is in ensuring the thoughts and concerns of Albertans and others across the prairies are heard by the top levels of government.