An NDP-led protest against Alberta Premier Danielle Smith’s proposed Sovereignty Act legislation was a major flop, with only a handful of attendees showing up.
Smith pitched the Alberta Sovereignty Within a United Canada Act as a means to bar federal legislation deemed harmful to the province and its interests.
Mainstream media coverage referred to the event as a “rally,” but photographs and videos taken at the Sunday event reveal a deserted Alberta Legislative Assembly grounds.
Protest supporters complained on social media how nobody came and claimed Smith’s opponents were “scared away” by the new premier’s supporters.
‘Wasn’t this an anti-sovereignty act protest,” asked one Reddit user.
“Like, I have a job and can’t show up on a sunday in a city 3h away. (Danielle Smith) isn’t even there anyways. What’s the point of this?”
“I went and was hopeful. I thim maybe there was a few people showing up that got scared away by all the DS supporters,” explained another.
“I showed up for the anti sovereignty act rally, but only pro sovereignty act people showed up it seems.”
Opponents of the bill were largely outnumbered by supporters who carried “We stand for sovereignty” and “We support Danielle Smith” signs.
Smith is preparing for a showdown with the federal government with her Sovereignty Act proposal.
Instead of supporting an Alberta Sovereignty Act, Alberta NDP leader Rachel Notley sided with the federal government.
Smith has also received criticism for the proposal from within her own camp. In August, former Alberta premier Jason Kenney called Smith’s proposed Alberta Sovereignty Act “nuts” and said it’s “unthinkable” it would be granted royal assent.
Meanwhile, Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe has drafted Alberta-style Sovereignty Act legislation.
Moe says it’s time to defend and assert Saskatchewan’s economic autonomy by “drawing the line.” Moe wants to pass provincial legislation to clarify and protect Saskatchewan’s constitutional rights.
His proposal would give the province exclusive use over their resources like electricity and any emissions associated with fertilizer, oil and gas.