Edmonton’s Whyte Avenue at 4 a.m., as imagined by Ric McIver, would-be Tory leader and premier. Actual Alberta street scenes are unlikely ever to be as described with regard to the availability of taxicabs. Below: Mr. McIver, candidates Jim Prentice and Thomas Lukaszuk.
Well, no one can say that Ric McIver hasn’t set himself apart from the other two candidates for the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party leadership.
While frontrunner Jim Prentice and tail gunner Thomas Lukaszuk have each offered five largely meaningless anodyne platitudes as their priorities, Mr. McIver has been right out there with some fairly definitive (Read more…)
Thomas Lukaszuk is an entertaining speaker with a full range of facial expressions. His party is going to make darned sure he doesn’t have a chance to use those talents in the service of his leadership bid. Below: PC leadership frontrunner Jim Prentice and candidate Ric McIver.
While Thomas Lukaszuk’s chances of succeeding in the race to become leader of the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party always seemed like a long shot, one has to feel a certain sympathy with the Edmonton MLA’s protest his party won’t permit a real unscripted debate to take place among the three candidates for the (Read more…)
TweetBy my count, there remain eight Progressive Conservative MLAs who have not endorsed a leadership candidate Jim Prentice in the race to become that party’s next leader. As of this week, 49 of 59 PC MLAs have endorsed Mr. Prentice’s candidacy to become their next leader. Leadership candidates Ric McIver and Thomas Lukaszuk have not earned any endorsements from their MLA colleagues. […]
Ladies and gentlemen, place your bets. All the money’s on Jim Prentice – but is it the smart money? Below: Ric McIver, Jim Prentice, Jim Dinning and Gary Mar.
Could Ric McIver actually win the Alberta Progressive Conservative leadership race?
Or, to put that another way, could Jim Prentice lose?
Maybe that seems like a theme for a political science fiction story to you. After all, Mr. Prentice – the former banker, corporate lobbyist and federal cabinet minister – is the choice of the PC establishment.
What’s more, he’s now backed by 49 of 59 PC Members of the (Read more…)
Brian Mulroney, right, famously responds to the claim made by John Turner, left, that he had “no option” but approve Pierre Trudeau’s patronage appointments. Below: Gary Mar in 2011.
Advice to Jim Prentice: If, in some future pre-election leaders’ debate someone asks you about Gary Mar’s 2013 compensation package, don’t say: “I had no option.”
In fact, that would be true if Mr. Prentice were to say it. Ditto Ric McIver, the second- or third-runner, depending how you calculate it, in the 2014 version of the Progressive Conservative Party leadership race.
As for Thomas Lukaszuk, he was in cabinet (Read more…)
TweetA report from Auditor General Merwan Saher released this week found no evidence that the Department of Environment and Sustainable Resource Development has properly monitored the performance of the PC Government’s climate change strategy which was first implemented in 2008. The report also uncovered serious problems with the province’s expensive Carbon Capture and Storage strategy. Since it […]
Fort McMurray-Wood Buffalo Tory MLA Mike Allen: Excited to be back in the Tory caucus. (Dave Cournoyer photo, used with permission.)
Say what you like about the many flaws of former Alberta premier Alison Redford, she never would have let Mike Allen back into the Progressive Conservative caucus, not as long as the Fort McMurray-Wood Buffalo Tory MLA lived, breathed and managed to get reelected.
It was on July 16 last year when the once and future professional jazz musician was in St. Paul, Minn., as a representative of the Government of Alberta when he was caught by (Read more…)
The Hancock Conservatives do good-cop-bad-cop? At left, Jeff Johnson as Jim Prentice, at right, tries to get him to straighten up and fly a little less far right. Actual Alberta Progressive Conservatives may not appear exactly as illustrated, especially in this unlikely scenario. Below: My only picture of the real Mr. Johnson; one of many of the real Mr. Prentice.
Anti-teacher sentiment runs deep nowadays in Alberta conservative circles.
Education Minister Jeff Johnson’s war with the Alberta Teachers Association over how its members ought to be disciplined on those rare occasions when they misbehave is only the latest manifestation of (Read more…)
Tweet“Alleged death threats, implied bribes, constituency association ambushes and supposed Progressive Conservative Party skulduggery,” is how a Red Deer Advocate report described the unexpectedly interesting Wildrose Party nomination in the Rimbey-Rocky Mountain House-Sundre constituency. First-term MLA Joe Anglin is being challenged for his nomination by former local Wildrose president Jason Nixon. Mr. Anglin is long-time rabble-rouser who set […]
Education Minister Jeff Johnson flips burgers at Alison Redford’s K-Days Breakfast, last year. A sign of things to come for Mr. Johnson? Below: Premier Dave Hancock, who knows what he needs to do, former premier Redford, who knew exactly what she wanted, and Alberta Information Commissioner Jill Clayton, who knows the law.
Now that we know Education Minister Jeff Johnson or someone in his office broke Alberta’s Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act to send an email to more than 34,000 teachers back in 2013, is it time for Dave Hancock to start acting like he really is (Read more…)
Jim Prentice surrounded by supporters in Edmonton. Below: Defiant Education Minister Jeff Johnson, Premier Dave Hancock, political strategist Stephen Carter.
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world…
Never mind the bit about any second coming being at hand. You can go too far, in my estimation, searching modern poets for political metaphor. Anyway, that was what Alison Redford was supposed to be, wasn’t it? Or was that Ed Stelmach?
Just the same, I do have a revelation for you: the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party, the mighty dynasty created 43 years ago by the (Read more…)
Tory leadership front-runner Jim Prentice on the campaign trail. Below: Former premier Alison Redford; Education Minister, though presumably not for long, Jeff Johnson; leadership candidate Thomas Lukaszuk.
Perhaps it’s time to just come right out and state the obvious: If Tory leadership front-runner Jim Prentice wants even a few of Alberta’s badly burned progressive voters to give his so-called Progressive Conservative Party their consideration one more time, he’s going to have to do more than make promises.
There’s one big reason for this: Alison Redford.
Back in 2011, when she was running for the leadership of the Alberta PC Party, (Read more…)
TweetMost people rely on TripAdvisor or call a travel agent to book hotels for overseas trips, but it is alleged by intrepid CBC investigative journalists that former Premier Alison Redford dispatched a staffer to visit hotels and restaurants in advance of her trips to India, China, Switzerland, Washington, and Toronto for a cost of nearly $330,000. It is not […]
Tory candidate Jim Prentice greets supporters at the opening of his Edmonton campaign headquarters Tuesday evening, showing the first signs of development of the hard-to-avoid campaign paunch. Below: Prover Tory vote-getter Ed Stelmach; Rimbey-Rocky Mountain House-Sundre MLA Joe Anglin.
Looking tired and uncharacteristically slightly rumpled, Progressive Conservative leadership front-runner Jim Prentice pleaded with supporters at his new Edmonton campaign headquarters Tuesday evening to help him sell 100,000 Tory Party memberships by September.
“We need you to take a membership book and sell it over the summer,” Mr. Prentice told the crowd – which was substantial, but not exactly a multitude (Read more…)
The Ric McIver campaign balloon makes its way through downtown Calgary. Who ya gonna call? Kathleen Wynne? Some of the cast of the Gong Show, Alberta Edition, below: Former infrastructure minister McIver, Infrastructure Minister Wayne Drysdale, and actual acting infrastructure minister Dave Hancock.
Alberta’s Progressive Conservative Party is looking for a new leader, but what it may actually need is an exorcism, or at least the services of a good ghostbuster.
Bad ideas from the recent and distant past keep haunting the hapless PCs until it seems unlikely even leadership frontrunner Jim Prentice, the ostensible solution to all the (Read more…)
Sun News Network columnist Lorne Gunter is presented an award by National Firearms Association President Sheldon Clare for his commentary on the so-called “High River Gun Grab.” (Grabbed from the NFA’s website.) Below: Floodwaters roar through High River last year. (CBC Photo)
Rain is falling and floodwaters are rising again in Southern Alberta.
A year less a day since catastrophic floods hit the nearby town of High River, population 13,000, local states of emergency were declared yesterday on the Blood Reserve, around the towns of Claresholm and Cardston, and in the areas of the cities of Lethbridge and (Read more…)
Progressive Conservative leadership candidate opens the 2013 March for Jesus in Calgary. If he hadn’t gone back this year, he’d probably be OK. Below: King Solomon.
He fell into a burnin’ Lake of Fire
He went down, down, down and the flames went higher!
And it burns, burns, burns … the Lake of Fire…
The Lake of Fire…
I speak, of course, of Progressive Conservative leadership candidate Ric McIver, who on Sunday Tweeted pictures of himself attending the Father’s Day “March for Jesus” sponsored by the Calgary Street Church, a group that holds particularly virulent views about gay people.
Last (Read more…)
Ontario’s victorious Liberal Premier Kathleen Wynne last summer. Below: Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath and Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak.
Well! That didn’t work out quite as well as we’d hoped, did it? Can we get back to being New Democrats now?
I speak, of course, of the results of last night’s Ontario provincial election – in which it seems to me from my vantage point out here on the Great Plains that there are lessons in the vote for New Democrats in the west and the New Democrats in Ottawa too.
I realize that the great Canadian tradition of (Read more…)
“Diamond Jim” Prentice, at right, in a strategy session with Alberta Premier Dave Hancock, as described by the provincial NDP and seen by the Wildrose Party. Below: the real Mr. Prentice and former premier Alison Redford.
If you’re looking for a yardstick with which to measure the truly spectacular failure of the short, unhappy reign of Alison Redford over Alberta, just consider the last few days as experienced by Jim Prentice.
Mr. Prentice, of course, is the front-runner in the race to become Ms. Redford’s permanent replacement at the helm of Alberta’s Progressive Conservative dynasty, which has ruled Alberta (Read more…)
TweetThe long-summer of 2014 has begun in Alberta politics. With little substantial policy ideas to dispute or debate, Alberta’s opposition parties have set their sights on Progressive Conservative leadership front-runner Jim Prentice (if this continues, Thomas Lukaszuk and Ric McIver are going to start feeling left out). Hoping to tie Mr. Prentice to frequent-flying former Premier Alison Redford […]
The Wildrose Party with Danielle Smith holding the reins appears to continue to lead the Alberta Progressive Conservatives handily. Actual Alberta politicians and astonished onlookers may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: PC leadership candidates Jim Prentice, Thomas Lukaszuk and Ric McIver, none of whom seems to be making much difference to their foundering party’s fortunes, and the real Ms. Smith.
The latest version of a regular Alberta poll, which was conducted in late May, shows the Wildrose Party far in the lead with 41 per cent of committed voters.
Significantly, the arrival in the Progressive Conservative leadership race of (Read more…)
TweetThe race is still in its early stages, but Albertans hoping the Progressive Conservatives leadership contest would spark a great policy debate about the future of our province are so far disappointed. The most notable news so far from this race has been the growing number of endorsements collected by front-runner Jim Prentice. While 45 of […]
Riders from the Gay Rodeo welcome Edmontonians to the New West yesterday! Scenes from Edmonton’s Pride Parade below: Alberta Premier Dave Hancock, left, and Edmonton City Councillor Scott McKeen, right, with a parade participant; Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson on his bicycle with his kids; a couple of parade participants trying to sell underwear; NDP Edmonton MP Linda Duncan with B.C. MP Randall Garrison; dancers; angels; sailors; and parade royalty.
When chartered banks and dog-rescue societies have floats in a local Pride Parade, you’ve got to know that more than just the parade has gone mainstream.
Fact is, real Albertans (Read more…)
Found on the Internet, apropos of nothing in particular, Ric McIver and friend. Below: Craig B. Chandler of the Progressive Group for Independent Business.
Up to now, Progressive Conservative leadership candidate Ric McIver has quite successfully flown under the radar about his ideological beliefs.
Indeed, very little has been written about what makes Mr. McIver tick – and almost nothing at all about what he believes, and therefore what he would do in office.
His official biography is uninformative, as is his Wikipedia entry. Neither provides any hint about his economic or philosophical views beyond his party affiliation – and (Read more…)
Former Edmonton Mayor Stephen Mandel and PC leadership candidate Jim Prentice, obviously pleased to be in one another’s company, at a news conference yesterday in Edmonton at which Mr. Mandel endorsed Mr. Prentice. Below: The other Tory leadership candidates, Ric McIver and Thomas Lukaszuk, and New Democrat MLA Rachel Notley, who is expected to declare her candidacy to lead the Alberta NDP soon.
If there was any real news from yesterday’s news conference atop the Chateau Lacombe Hotel in downtown Edmonton, at which Progressive Conservative former Edmonton mayor Stephen Mandel endorsed Progressive Conservative future Alberta premier Jim Prentice, it was (Read more…)