“Ottawa has made a bad situation worse,” Jason Kenney told supporters gathered at the Calgary Stampede Grounds Tuesday night to celebrate his election win.

The conservative premier-elect explained the Trudeau government has made Alberta’s economy and a besieged oil industry worse by “killing two major pipelines, including Energy East.” And, now, “imposing new laws that will make it impossible to get pipelines approved in the future.”

Those explanations aren’t based on facts, but they tell you a lot about the messages you can expect to see repeated again and again during this fall’s federal election.

These are messages that need to be meticulously fact-checked and corrected, on the record, as fast as possible. And that’s where you come in: your donation today to the Election Integrity Project makes it possible for National Observer to dedicate a team of journalists and data analysts to sifting through the campaign speeches and slogans to get you the facts.

Here are the facts, for the record:

  • The Trudeau government rejected one coastal pipeline, the Enbridge Northern Gateway, after it was quashed by the courts due to mistakes made by the Harper government.

  • Jason Kenney was a minister in the Harper government.

  • The Energy East pipeline was never rejected. The company behind the proposal to send Alberta oil east pulled out in 2017. Without subsidies, it’s unlikely to be revived.

  • The Trudeau government’s new proposed federal laws do not make it impossible to build pipelines.

Why do these facts matter?

It is easy to look south of Canada’s borders to find politicians who play fast and loose with facts, and to be left uneasy about the real-world fallout.

But this is the challenge that the Election Integrity Project is taking on: misconstrued facts, when accepted, unchallenged, and repeated can justify changing the rules by which we live.

Unchecked and given wings, misleading information does not serve people who have very serious decisions to make this fall about the future of Canada and of the world.

Jason Kenney made it clear Tuesday that he wants to tear down environmental rules in Alberta and go to war with people who care about climate change.

He promised to spend millions of dollars on a war room dedicated to attacking environmentalists – he calls them “foreign-funded special interests” — and launch a public inquiry against them.

When you donate to the Election Integrity Project – whether you give $50 or $100 or even $500 – you are empowering the National Observer’s team to hold facts up to the light and hold political leaders to account.

If National Observer can raise $75,000 by May 15, you will be ensuring political leaders who have power and who seek power are listened to very carefully, and that what they say is checked against facts.

You will also be making sure online bot campaigns are exposed, donations are followed, and industry campaigns are scrutinized.

You will be funding a special series of stories dedicated to surfacing threats to Canada’s democracy.

Canada is being targeted by disinformation

The timing of the Election Integrity Project is crucial.

In Vancouver this week, a panel of experts said Canada will become a target for disinformation campaigns from malicious actors in the lead-up to the federal election this fall. And there will be efforts to seed intolerant views that can break Canadians apart and tear the country’s social fabric by exploiting issues like climate change and immigration.

Video from SFU Public Square and Vancity's Confronting the Disinformation Age discussion with David Frum, Sue Gardner, and Christopher Wylie on April 16, 2019.

You can help shed light on false claims and inaccurate spin undermining Canada's democracy. Please donate today to make the Election Integrity Project possible.

Keep reading

"Fact-checking Alberta's new premier"

Where do you start?

P.S. Alberta's recent NDP Premier played fast and loose with the facts over pipelines, too. This isn't a right-left divide, anymore.

Albertans have been badly governed for a long, long time.

In 1997, Getty stopped contributing to the Lougheed's Heritage Fund,

then in 2006 Ralph Kline came up with his $1000 Christmas Prosperity Bonus to Alfberta tax payers,


and in 2018 right winger Ted Morton pleaded with Jim Prentice to get back to basics.

"Do something that no premier has had the courage to do since Ralph Klein: Tell Albertans the truth about our public finances. Start the process of weaning the annual budgeting process off of energy revenues. Resurrect the Lougheed policy of legally mandating that a set percentage of NRRR must be deposited in the Heritage Fund each year. But this time make it a constitutional rule – a rule that cannot be amended or repealed by a simple majority vote (a la Mr. Getty, Ed Stelmach and Alison Redford) every time it becomes inconvenient. Make it politician-proof. The models of success are out there – Norway and Alaska – to be adopted by and adapted to Alberta."



Meanwhile, Norwegians, acting on advice of a Iranian/Iraqi emigre engineer, started their Heritage Fund in 1991, and now have over $1 trillion --- and they are driving electric cars


"It has over US$1 trillion in assets, including 1.3% of global stocks and shares, making it the world's largest sovereign wealth fund. In May 2018 it was worth about $195,000 per Norwegian citizen. It also holds portfolios of real estate and fixed-income investments."

And now smlin' Jason Kenny enters driving a gas guzzler and needing to get his facts right. I've just added to my support for the National Observer and its fact checking project.


Good information on statements made by Kenny. I would hope that the project does proceed and perhaps help clear up misinformation on a number of areas.

A lot of misquotes are made in the media related to all politicians. We all need to check the Ford statements as well, the media does not always get them right.