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Trump strategist Kellyanne Conway cancels Alberta visit

In this Dec. 1, 2016 photo, Kellyanne Conway, Trump-Pence campaign manager, is shown prior to a forum at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government in Cambridge, Mass. Conway is headed to the White House, where she'll serve as counselor to the president. The announcement was made by the president-elect's transition team early Thursday. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)

Trump strategist Kellyanne Conway's visit to Alberta next week has been cancelled.

The Alberta-based conservative group that had organized Ms. Conway's visit said in an announcement Saturday her trip is not going forward. The former campaign adviser to U.S. President-elect Donald Trump was to visit the oil sands region near Fort McMurray, and had been scheduled to speak to business leaders at a private fundraising dinner on Jan. 12.

But there were doubts raised about whether the Canadian visit, scheduled for the week before the presidential inauguration, would actually take place given the fact Ms. Conway was in December given a key position in Mr. Trump's White House.

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"I can tell you that Ms. Conway's office and our own have tried every option at our disposal to make this work and, unfortunately, a visit is just not possible at this time," said Barry McNamar, president of the Alberta Prosperity Fund, in a news release.

The fund bills itself as a conservative political-action committee, an American-style vehicle that funds campaigns beyond traditional party lines. The visit by Ms. Conway was seen as an opportunity to make a pitch for the province's oil sands sector and struggling energy industry as a whole, to a key member of Mr. Trump's inner circle.

The fund said Saturday that Ms. Conway's visit had been met with a "groundswell of support from Canadian business leaders keen to show their support for what is widely viewed as a business and jobs-friendly administration."

The Jan. 12 fundraising event, to be held in Calgary, was sold out within days of the initial announcement, the group said. There are no current plans to reschedule the trip, and the group is in the process of issuing refunds.

"Naturally we are disappointed," said Heather Forsyth, chair of the fund and a former Wildrose MLA. "Canadians were keen to hear about the Trump campaign's path to victory and to simply show support for a new free enterprise administration."

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