A look at the Sask. political landscape as the legislature resumes

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By Andrew Benson Global News Posted March 3, 2023 7:42 pm 2:04 Saskatchewan legislature set to begin Monday WATCH: The Saskatchewan legislative session begins Monday, and a lot has changed in the Sask. political landscape over the last few months. There’s even more change to come in the near future. The Saskatchewan legislature session is set to resume Monday, but a lot has changed in the Sask. political landscape over the last few months. Even more changes are to come. A by-election and general election are on the horizon and though they’ll only have a single seat, there will be a new party in the house on March 6.The Saskatchewan United Party officially launched this week and is led by former independent MLA Nadine Wilson.While the party’s values are still being rolled out, they’re emphasizing control over resource development and relaxed gun control.One expert, however, said like other emerging right-of-centre parties in Canada, their support tends to be highest in rural regions where mainstream right-wing parties are already popular. Story continues below advertisement “They, I suspect, will take some votes from the Saskatchewan Party but whether they will take enough to be a serious threat to any of these parties’ seats (is up in the air),” Daniel Westlake, a political science professor at the University of Saskatchewan.Meanwhile, a party that doesn’t occupy any seats is also looking to shake up the landscape. Trending Now Later this month, the Saskatchewan Liberals will vote on whether to leave their unpopular liberal roots behind and rebrand.Liberal leader Jeff Walters hopes to help position the party in what he sees as a ‘widening gap’ in the middle of the political spectrum.“If a great idea comes from the far-right, or the far-left, we would be crazy not to entertain that idea if it creates the greatest amount of good for the greatest number of people,” Walters said. “That is a true centrist party.”A by-election will be coming soon to Regina-Coronation Park followed by a general election in 2024.For the official opposition – the Sask. NDP – Westlake said the party will need to be more opportunistic this sitting and try to capitalize on any controversial policies as they struggle to increase their 12-seat presence in the legislature. Story continues below advertisement “The Sask. Party has had a comfortable lead in the polls and that seems consistent with the underlying situation in Saskatchewan quite friendly to them,” Westlake said.In terms of legislative business ahead, members will get to work debating recently introduced bills such as the controversial Saskatchewan First Act – a Sask. Party legislation meant to assert more control in their ongoing battles with Ottawa. 1:31 Sask. government finalizes health-care agreement &copy 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc. Sponsored content Flyers

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