Federal leaders point fingers at each other over Alberta's COVID-19 health emergency

·1 min read

OTTAWA — Federal leaders are pointing the finger at each other over the spiralling COVID-19 crisis in Alberta, each seeking to forge a link in voters' minds between the health emergency in the province and the others' policies.

Justin Trudeau, speaking from Montreal this morning, said conservative politicians across the country have not been as effective in fighting the pandemic, and questioned whether Tory Leader Erin O'Toole should be sitting across from them at the premiers' table.

Minutes later at an event in Saint John, N.B., O'Toole pinned the situation in Alberta largely on Trudeau without mentioning Premier Jason Kenney, saying the Liberal leader let the Delta variant gain a foothold and proceeded to trigger an election amid a surging fourth wave.

In Toronto, New Democrat Leader Jagmeet Singh said Kenney is to blame but insisted Trudeau must share responsibility, since he set off an election campaign that has soaked up attention and sent candidates canvassing across the country ahead of voting day on Sept. 20.

Singh also says he will change his tactics on the ground to adapt to Alberta's unfolding crisis, but offered no specifics, saying an "assessment" is underway.

Kenney reintroduced limits on gatherings Wednesday along with elements of a vaccine passport system in Alberta as he declared a public health emergency that is threatening to see intensive care units overflow in just over a week.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 16, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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