MacKay mocked for off-the-cuff 'Albertastan' comment
Justice Minister Peter MacKay appears at Commons committee on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Monday, April 27, 2015. (Sean Kilpatrick / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Josh Elliott, CTVNews.ca
Published Sunday, May 10, 2015 10:16AM EDT
In Albertastan, workers frack oil for make benefit glorious majority New Democratic Party.
At least, that's one of the jokes – taken from the script of “Borat” -- going around online, as Twitter users continue to mock federal Justice Minister Peter MacKay and his off-the-cuff "Albertastan" remark made in the wake of an NDP victory in Alberta's election.
MacKay made the comment to reporters following a Conservative caucus meeting earlier this week, in which he and other Tories lamented the loss of Alberta's Progressive Conservative Party to the NDP in Tuesday's election.
"It was like a morgue," MacKay said of the atmosphere at caucus. "Someone said it was like, 'It's Albertastan now,'" he quipped.
The social media backlash was swift and filled with snark. Many cracked jokes about Alberta as though it were a former Soviet country in Eastern Europe. One individual even went so far as to create T-shirts with "People's Republic of Albertastan" written on them.
Two days into new leadership in #Albertastan and still we drive on the right. Change coming much slower than we thought. Patience, comrades.— Pauly Em (@ohmyhog) May 8, 2015
BREAKING: WEST EDMONTON MALL RENAMED WEST EDMONTON ASSET DISTRIBUTION CENTRE!!!! #ALBERTASTAN— Dr. Bruce Panner (@YukonHulk) May 7, 2015
MacKay later defended his use of the term, saying he heard it from an Albertan at caucus and dismissing it as an "off-the-cuff" comment.
"It was an off-hand remark and certainly not meant to be an insult and not meant to in any way hurt feelings," MacKay said. "I couldn't claim originality."
The left-leaning NDP swept to power with a majority win in Tuesday's provincial election, after 44 straight years of PC governments in Alberta.
The surprising turn could be cause for concern among the federal Conservatives, who will look for another strong showing in Alberta to help power them to another majority government in an election expected to occur this fall.