Much like the attention of the two main party leaders during the campaign, the major urban centres is where the focus will be in Monday’s election.
That’s where a number of key races are expected to play out.
News Talk Radio has a breakdown of what constituencies to watch:
- Regina Coronation Park: Mark Docherty took the long-time NDP-held seat four years ago with 53 per cent of the popular vote. This election he is up against the equally well-known runner and immigrant Ted Jaleta. It is a seat the NDP is hoping to take back.
- Regina Douglas Park: This was one of the biggest shocks from four years ago when then NDP leader Dwain Lingenfelter was defeated by teacher and public school board trustee Russ Marchuk. This time there is no incumbent as Marchuk stepped down after just one term. The two biggest candidates are for the NDP – Catholic school board trustee Nicole Sarauer – and well-known cooking enthusiast CJ Katz. The set was held by the NDP for most of its history, but Green Party leader Victor Lau’s name is also on the ballot which take some votes away from the NDP.
- Regina Lakeview: Expected to be one of the biggest battles of the night. Four years ago this constituency was one of the last to be called as it went back and forth between incumbent and veteran NDP MLA John Nilson and now-city councillor Bob Hawkins. With no incumbent, the NDP are hoping to hold onto the seat with public school board trustee Carla Beck against community pastor Dan Cooper for the Saskatchewan Party.
- Saskatoon Churchill-Wildwood: A new constituency as part of the introduction of two new MLAs to the city, the boundary encompasses what were Saskatchewan Party-friendly areas. But with no incumbent running, the Saskatchewan Party’s Lisa Lambert, a long-time catholic school board trustee, is hoping for a win against the NDP’s Tanya Dunn-Pierce, a health and public policy writer with the health region.
- Saskatoon Fairview: Another constituency that went through the night in 2011 when the Saskatchewan Party’s Jennifer Campeau beat incumbent Andy Iwanchuk but just over 200 votes. Campeau will once again be in a tight race this time with the NDP’s Victoria Mowat, a respected reservist who trains cadets.
- Saskatoon University: This newly-redistributed constituency that encompasses Rob Norris’ old Saskatoon Greystone riding along with some new eastside territory. Eric Olauson is the well-known city councillor running for the Saskatchewan Party who is vying for the seat against Jennifer Bowes, a labour relations officer with the Health Sciences Association.
- Cumberland: While the NDP’s Doyle Vermette safely held onto his seat by 63 per cent four years ago, this time the Saskatchewan Party challenger is the young mayor of La Ronge, Thomas Sierzycki. If the Saskatchewan Party hopes to one day break into the NDP-strong north, this is the best opportunity.
- Moose Jaw Wakamow: the Saskatchewan Party’s Greg Lawrence took the seat by 49 per cent to incumbent Deb Higgins’ 45 per cent four years ago. Lawrence is hoping for a bigger margin this time against the NDP’s Karen Purdy, a nurse, who was said to have been called “a whore” by Tory MP Tom Luwkiski, an allegation he vehemently denies. Luwkiski insists he said “NDP horde”.
- Moose Jaw North: Another stronghold for the NDP until 2007 when long-time MLA Glenn Hagel was beaten by Warren Michelson with just 33 votes. Michelson managed to extend his lead four years later by a couple of thousand. He will be hoping to repeat that again.
- Prince Albert Carlton: This was traditional NDP territory before local policeman Darryl Hickie took the seat in 2007. The NDP is hoping to increase its caucus with a seat again in the city. Joe Hargrave is a prominent businessman for the Saskatchewan Party against Shane Lazarowich, an executive director with the PA multicultural council, for the NDP.
- Prince Albert Northcote: Another seat the NDP hopes to win back. The Saskatchewan Party’s Victoria Jurgens took the seat by 50 per cent four years ago. Jurgens wants to increase her margin against social worker Nicole Rancourt for the NDP.