Kaeding Heads Back to the Legislature

·3 min read

It’s still unofficial, but it seems like a sure shot that long time Churchbridge resident Warren Kaeding of the Sask. Party is heading back into the Legislature to represent the Melville-Saltcoats riding once again. 2020 Elections Saskatchewan shows that Kaeding has 5288 votes from all 53 polling stations reporting, there were 541 mail-in ballot requests issued, 365 counted and 22 rejected, giving Kaeding a clear standing against the next candidate Bonnie Galenzoski of the NDP who received 1224 votes.

Campaigning and voting this election has been a new experience for both voters and candidates alike with the added strain of a pandemic raging amidst the campaign trail, yet we persevered.

“The campaign went well as we had a very good team. Rick McIntyre was our campaign manager and did an extraordinary job organizing and setting things up considering the COVID protocols we were working with. A lot of our campaign team has been through the election process before. Signing, office set-up and data accumulation was very streamlined,” commented Kaeding when asked about he felt his campaign went. Kaeding continued with, “A re-election is an evaluation of the work you have done personally and as a government. A couple of things that stood out was the engagement of young people in the election. The interest in schools, on the street and even on our campaign. We had a number of young people from 14 years old to 25 that wanted to be a part of our campaign. I was also surprised by the amount of interest in the American election by our electorate.”

Voters found the polling stations were regulated heavily with COVID-19 regulations, causing some issues at times. The elderly seemed to especially have difficulties with the icy cold conditions and the new curbside and online registration for mail-in voting which was implemented to help with the pandemic issues.

When asked about how COVID-19 affected the campaign trail, Kaeding replied, “With COVID in the area and parts of the constituency considered in a breakout we did campaign differently. Normally we would like to do a lot of door to door visiting….We limited the number of doors that we knocked on, and engaged more through social media, radio and television. We tried to be as available as possible encouraging emails, texts and phone calls if anyone had specific questions or concerns. I was surprised by the interest in not just advance voting but also in mail-in ballots, especially in the urban constituencies.” “The results of the election indicate there is a growing frustration with how Saskatchewan is treated by our federal government. We feel that same frustration, whether it is questioning the constitutionality of the Federal carbon tax, the inequality of equalization payments, the inequality of the Canada Health Transfer and the Canada Social Transfer payments”, commented Keading when discussing the smaller political parties such as the Sask Green Party and the Buffalo Party.” Kaeding went on to explain, “We are frustrated with the lack of comparable federal support for the oil and gas sector, which continues to remain an important part of the economy of Western Canada. We are frustrated with the lack of comparable federal support for the oil and gas sector, which continues to remain an important part of the economy of Western Canada.” The Honourable Warren Kaeding has shown his vigilance by standing up for the residents on the Melville-Saltcoats riding for the last four years and seems to have a clear vision of where the next four years are heading, as he parted with these final words, “We have heard the concerns of the electorate and know there is more work to be done, starting yesterday!”

Gary Horseman, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Four-Town Journal