Alberta Politics: Are moderate Alberta conservatives likely to find themselves waking up to a Wildrose nightmare?

ILLUSTRATIONS: It’s a nightmare alright – but whose? Actual Alberta voters may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: Wildrose Leader Brian Jean and NDP Premier Rachel Notley. (Both shown in CBC photos.) The prevailing narrative in the Alberta media, as a headline in the reliably pro-Wildrose Edmonton Sun put it earlier this week, is that ...

daveberta.ca – Alberta Politics: Alberta’s Tories Poised to Sweep Election in Spring 2016

December 17, 2015 By: Dirk Pranter, Provincial Affairs columnist, Calgary Sunherald One year after nearly the entire official opposition crossed the floor to join Alberta’s Progressive Conservatives, the 44 year long governing party is expected to sweep the province for a record thirteenth… Continue Reading →

Alberta Politics: New board in; CEO Vickie Kaminski out … just another day at Alberta Health Services!

PHOTOS: Outgoing AHS CEO Vickie Kaminski at an Edmonton news conference last year. Below: Redford-era health minister Fred Horne, PC premier pro tem Dave Hancock, NDP Health Minister Sarah Hoffman and Premier Rachel Notley’s just-appointed deputy chief of staff, Anne McGrath. If you expected yesterday’s health care news merely to be the resumption of board ...

Alberta Politics: Sudden death of young PC star Manmeet Bhullar in road accident stuns Alberta Legislature

PHOTO: Progressive Conservative MLA Manmeet Bhullar, who was killed yesterday in a traffic accident on his way to Edmonton from Calgary (PC Party photo). The sudden death of Calgary-Greenway MLA Manmeet Bhullar in a traffic accident yesterday on the highway between Calgary and Edmonton was a shock to everyone involved in the political life of ...

Alberta Politics: Will the social conservative elephant in the Wildrose room crowd out the Tories being wooed by party Leader Brian Jean?

PHOTOS: With AGM delegates’ endorsement in hand, Wildrose Leader Brian Jean is calling for Alberta’s right to reunite under his party’s banner. Below: Former Wildrose leader Danielle Smith, in her current role as a radio talk show host (Global News photo) and Cypress-Medicine Hat MLA and former leadership candidate Drew Barnes. In his speech to ...

daveberta.ca - Alberta Politics: Wildrose demands transparency from NDP and PCs but holds its annual meeting in secret

Alberta’s conservative Wildrose Party is holding its annual general meeting this weekend in Calgary and, according to one media source, the event will be closed to the media with the exception of leader Brian Jean‘s speech ahead of the leadership review vote on the evening of… Continue Reading →

daveberta.ca - Alberta Politics: What about Bob? Hawkesworth swoops into top political job.

Former Calgary alderman Bob Hawkesworth has been appointed Executive Director of Premier Rachel Notley’s southern Alberta office at the McDougall Centre in Calgary. A press release sent out on Nov. 7 states that Mr. Hawkesworth will be responsible for “the… Continue Reading →

daveberta.ca - Alberta Politics: Keystone XL is dead. New government means climate change back on the agenda.

Having enjoyed the last week in the sunny Berkeley, California, it felt odd to turn on the car radio to hear the local disc jockeys discussing the tarsands and the merits of a pipeline that would pump unrefined bitumen from Canada to Texas. Being one of… Continue Reading →

Alberta Politics: Rachel Notley sticks to her fiscal guns at ‘state of the province speech’ to Edmonton Chamber of Commerce

PHOTO: Alberta Premier Rachel Notley addressing the Alberta Chamber of Commerce yesterday. Alberta NDP Premier Rachel Notley yesterday continued a tradition of “state of the province speeches” to chamber of commerce audiences long beloved by the province’s Progressive Conservative premiers. PC premier Jim Prentice gave the last one to the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce in ...

Alberta Politics: Wildrose leader advocates a return to deep cuts and deep freezes for public services and public employees

PHOTOS: Opposition Leader Brian Jean holds forth on public jobs and public services during his Oct. 30 interview with the CBC. (Screenshot.) Below: Is this Mr. Jean’s idea of the future of Alberta’s public services? Below that: NDP Finance Minister Joe Ceci. Wildrose Leader Brian Jean is starting to sketch out his party’s policies in ...

Alberta Politics: Alberta Budget 2015: You’d almost think Rachel Notley’s NDP has concluded its job is to govern this province!

PHOTOS: Alberta Finance Minister Joe Ceci answers reporters’ questions after delivering the NDP’s first Budget Speech in the Alberta Legislature yesterday. (CBC Photo) Below: Wildrose Opposition Leader Brian Jean and Finance Critic Derek Fildebrandt also answer questions – but only from reporters who aren’t on the Wildrose Party’s Enemies List. Below that: One of Mr. ...

daveberta.ca - Alberta Politics: Sky does not fall as Alberta NDP presents its first budget

When Finance Minister Joe Ceci stood in the Legislature on Oct. 27 to deliver the Alberta NDP’s first budget, it marked the first time since 1972 that the budget was not tabled by a Progressive Conservative finance minister. The first budget of Premier Rachel Notley‘s… Continue Reading →

Alberta Politics: NDP brings to an end Alberta PCs’ bizarre experiment with one-person heath-care rule

PHOTOS: Alberta Health Minister Sarah Hoffman announces the restoration of normal board governance to Alberta Health Services at the provincial Legislature yesterday. Below: Newly appointed AHS Board members Linda Hughes, Glenda Yeates and Brenda Hemmelgarn. Below them: Premier Rachel Notley on the big screen at AUPE’s convention, as union President Guy Smith looks on, also ...

daveberta.ca - Alberta Politics: Notley creates Economic Development ministry, appoints rural Municipal Affairs minister

Alberta’s provincial cabinet grew from twelve to thirteen today with the appointment of Lesser Slave Lake MLA Danielle Larivee to the posts of Minister of Municipal Affairs and Service Alberta. Ms. Larivee takes over those roles from Deron Bilous. Mr. Bilous, one… Continue Reading →

daveberta.ca - Alberta Politics: Tax Increases no longer Political Kryptonite in Canadian Elections

It’s been a rough year for Conservatives in Canada as two major elections in six months have resulted in major blows for Conservative parties in Alberta and Ottawa. In May 2015, former federal cabinet minister and bank vice-president Jim Prentice, a political moderate… Continue Reading →

Alberta Politics: Welcome to the Orwellian world of Wildrose, where keeping your promises makes you a liar

PHOTOS: Possibly the Globe and Mail’s best headline of the decade. Below: NDP Premier Rachel Notley, Wildrose Finance Critic Derek Fildebrandt, the sailboat known as French Kiss, shown just to prove I didn’t make that part up, the full Globe headline, shown for the same reason. Is Alberta ready for democracy? Notwithstanding the unexpected election ...

Alberta Politics: Fireworks notably absent during final Edmonton royalty review public consultation

PHOTOS: Royalty review chair Dave Mowat, top left, addresses the small and polite crowd that showed up in Edmonton for the panel’s open house last night. Below: Mr. Mowat again and committee members Peter Tertzakian and Leona Hanson. The biggest challenge the Notley Government’s royalty review committee faces may turn out to be persuading the ...

daveberta.ca - Alberta Politics: Can Alberta’s Royalty Review get us off the “Royalty Roller Coaster?”

Alberta’s Royalty Review panel stopped in Edmonton on Oct. 6, 2015 for the fourth and final scheduled community consultation meeting. Compared to reports from a tense meeting the previous evening in Calgary, the crowd of about 120 Edmontonians was generally polite and quite… Continue Reading →

Alberta Politics: One day after his graceless departure, former Alberta ‘envoy’ to Washington lands lobbying gig

PHOTOS: Sour grapes! Actual former Alberta trade representatives may not appear exactly as illustrated. (Photo from Barkpost.com.) Below: Alberta Conservative-connected lobbyists Rob Merrifield, Hal Danchilla, Brian Storseth and Rick Orman. Rob Merrifield’s parting shot at the Alberta government: tacky. Canadian Strategy Group’s decision to hire Mr. Merrifield as a lobbyist: Um, are you sure you’re ...

Alberta Politics: Rachel Notley to Alberta’s trade ‘envoy’ to Washington: Nice seeing you ’round! Here’s your hat!

PHOTOS: Departing Alberta trade ‘envoy’ to Washington, D.C., Rob Merrifield, back in the day when he was a federal cabinet minister. Below: Former Alberta premier Jim Prentice, who hired Mr. Merrifield a year ago, and Premier Rachel Notley, who let him go at the end of last week. It was an easy mistake to make: ...

Alberta Politics: Thomas Lukaszuk, once the Gorgeous George of Alberta politics, ponders an unlikely political resurrection

PHOTOS: Thomas Lukaszuk, at what was arguably the summit of his political career, launching his bid in May 2014 to lead the Progressive Conservative Party and become premier of Alberta. Below: Mr. Lukaszuk showing his flowing locks to advantage, 1950s wrestling star Gorgeous George, and Edmonton-Castle Down MLA Nicole Goehring. When Thomas Lukaszuk announced he ...

Alberta Politics: Wildrose Party wins Calgary-Foothills by-election, and fairly decisively, but leaves plenty of grist for the mill

PHOTOS: Wildrose Party candidate Prasad Panda celebrates his victory last night in the Calgary-Foothills by-election with Wildrose Leader Brian Jean. (Photo from Mr. Panda’s Twitter account.) Below: NDP candidate Bob Hawkesworth and PC candidate Blair Houston. Within moments of Wildrose Party candidate Prasad Panda emerging as the winner in the Calgary-Foothills by-election yesterday evening, the ...

daveberta.ca - Alberta Politics: Wildrose steal Foothills from the PCs while NDP hold on to ‘orange wave’ support in second place

Wildrose Party candidate Prasad Panda became his party’s only MLA from Calgary by winning tonight’s by-election in Calgary-Foothills and stealing the constituency away from the Progressive Conservatives. PC candidate Blair Houston finished third in the constituency that elected former Premier Jim Prentice in another by-election ten months ago and in… Continue Reading →

daveberta.ca - Alberta Politics: Calgary-Foothills: The first by-election in Alberta’s post-PC political world

Today’s by-election in Calgary-Foothills is the first litmus test for Alberta’s political parties in the post-Progressive Conservative political world. When Rachel Notley led NDP candidates to victory in fifteen constituencies in the city on May 5, 2015, the “Orange Wave” broke at the boundaries of this constituency as conservative… Continue Reading →

Alberta Politics: Will Wildrose Leader Brian Jean repudiate his Calgary-Foothills candidate’s ‘communist’ characterization of the NDP?

PHOTOS: Part of the Wildrose Chinese-language brochure that compared the NDP to communists. Below: Wildrose Calgary-Foothills candidate Prasad Panda, former Tory education minister Thomas Lukaszuk, NDP candidate Bob Hawkesworth, former Wildrose House leader Rob Anderson and former Wildrose leader Paul Hinman. What words should we use to describe the Chinese-language brochure the Wildrose Party wrote ...