For Saskatchewan political watchers, 2018 may prove to be a banner year.
Brad Wall’s time as premier comes to an end at the end of January. A new premier will be selected in a Sask. Party leadership vote and the opposition NDP is set to choose a new leader in the spring.
“It is an interesting time to be following politics here,” commented Joe Garcea, University of Saskatchewan political scientist.
Garcea considers it to be a good thing that the Saskatchewan Party leadership race does not have one clear front-runner because he maintains then all candidates and the issues are heard and debated.
“The Sask Party is at a time of reflection, wondering in what direction they should go in the future,” Garcea explained on Gormley Tuesday.
He adds the spring budget will be the first true indicator of which direction the new premier intends to take the province.
On the NDP side, Garcea called Trent Wotherspoon the more experienced and traditional candidate, while his opponent Ryan Meili is more on the left of the political spectrum. He said this has given the leadership race a twist.
“If the budget is another tough medicine budget, then someone like Mr. Meili could do really well,” Garcea commented.
In that scenario, he expects that Meili would find it easier to take principled positions taking stands for and against certain issues.