"I suspect the PCs will win. I don't know," Naheed Nenshi said Thursday, later adding that he thinks a minority is possible.
Nenshi held one-on-one meetings with both NDP Leader Rachel Notley and Wildrose Leader Brian Jean earlier in the day.
He was quick to dispel criticisms that Notley is too extreme in her policies and Jean too wooden in his presentation.
"I met Rachel Notley for the first time. She did not terrify me at all," Nenshi said. "I met Brian Jean for the first time. I didn't try to cut him to see if he would bleed, but he was not in any way robotic."
The Progressive Conservatives have attacked Notley over an NDP plan, if the party wins the election, to review royalty rates charged to oil companies. The Tories say that would be bad for the economy.
Nenshi said he didn't have any concerns with the NDP leader on that front.
"I suggest that regardless who gets elected, they'll be able to work with industry," he said. "No one is dumb enough, no one gets this far in politics, if they're so dumb to kill the goose that lays the golden egg. But I do think there are different approaches."
The mayor said none of the parties nailed a 12-question Cities Matter survey given to them about issues ranging from transit to infrastructure funding to flood mitigation.
"You know none of them are my platform," Nenshi said. "None of them are precisely what I would have said.
"But that's not really the point. The point is to tease out new ideas and creative innovative solutions. The good news is ... I think all of them would do a pretty decent job. I am actually feeling really good about the choices Albertans have in this election."
Nenshi said the PCs indicated they would maintain the status quo and he has a few questions about the Wildrose plan for municipal funding.
"Wildrose has a very interesting plan on financing of cities. Providing 10 per cent of tax revenues and 10 per cent of surpluses to the cities with a new twist — 15 per cent going to something called the regional infrastructure program.
"There are some interesting questions around that."
Nenshi said the NDP response could have been a bit more detailed.
"The NDP were not quite as specific in their promises, though they showed a very good understanding of the issues the city faces."
He said the Liberals were the only main party that didn't come through with answers.
Nenshi took pains not to criticize any of the parties.
Early in the campaign, he questioned Premier Jim Prentice's decision to call an election a year before legislation dictated. He wondered how the government could spend millions of dollars on a vote after refusing to provide funding to help hire more investigators to look into the deaths of children in government care.
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