The blockade crisis surrounding the Coastal GasLink pipeline project has had the country in its grips for weeks now, and the political fallout from it does not appear to have been kind to the provincial leaders at the centre of it.
In British Columbia, Premier John Horgan’s job approval has dropped ten points, from 56 per cent in December to 46 per cent now. In a survey published by the Angus Reid Institute last week, just 18 per cent of British Columbians said Horgan had handled the Wet’suwet’en protests and solidarity blockades well, while 65 per cent said he had done a poor job.
In Alberta, Premier Jason Kenney’s approval has also slipped below the majority mark: It is down seven points to 47 per cent.
It comes as the Alberta government introduced the Critical Infrastructure Defence Act, which would impose “stiff new penalties on law breakers who purposefully block critical, essential infrastructure, such as railways, roadways”. Some legal observers have questioned whether the law may infringe on protesters Charter rights.