St. Albert and Morinville-area students returned Marie Renaud and Dale Nally to office during this week’s Student Vote.
Some 172,000 Alberta students cast mock ballots in the lead-up to Monday’s provincial election as part of the 2023 Student Vote Alberta initiative. Run by the non-profit CIVIX, this initiative saw students hold mock elections based on the actual 2023 provincial election to get them engaged in the democratic process.
This year’s Student Vote saw the NDP win province-wide with some 42 per cent of the vote and 48 seats, with the UCP coming second with about 40 per cent and 38 seats. Students also sent an Independent candidate to the legislature in the form of Funky Banjoko of Fort McMurray-Wood Buffalo, noted CIVIX chief programs officer Dan Allan.
Unofficial results from Elections Alberta showed that the UCP won a majority government after Monday’s vote with about 53 per cent of the vote and 49 seats to the NDP’s 44 per cent and 38 seats.
Morinville-St. Albert students re-elected UCP incumbent Dale Nally with about 40 per cent of the Student Vote, which was about 11 points less than what he got at the actual polls. The NDP’s Karen Shaw, Green Party’s Kurt Klingbeil, and Alberta Party’s Wayne Rufiange captured about 33, 14, and 13 per cent of the Student Vote, respectively, compared to the 45, one, and two per cent they got at the official polls.
St. Albert NDP incumbent Marie Renaud won a third term in office in the Student Vote, taking about 51 per cent of the mock ballots compared to 58 per cent of the actual ones. Cameron Jefferies of the Greens took 15 per cent of the Student Vote compared to roughly two per cent of the actual vote. UCP candidate Angela Wood took 34 per cent of the mock votes and 40 per cent of the real ones.
Bellerose Grade 12 student Makenna Patterson helped run the Student Vote at her school May 26, researching different parties, counting ballots, and running an in-school polling station. At her school, Renaud took 42 per cent of the vote, Wood 35, and Jefferies 19.
“Traditionally the youth are more left-leaning than older people,” she said, which could explain why the Green Party did so much better in her school’s Student Vote.
Patterson said Student Vote helped make a confident, informed decision Monday when she voted in her first real provincial election.
“It’s good to learn about the process before you actually come to do it,” she said.
Full Student Vote results are available at studentvote.ca.