Alberta Politics: Portrait unveiling stands in for the fond official farewell former premier Dave Hancock never had from his PCs

PHOTOS: Former Alberta Premier Dave Hancock in a typical pose, as he addresses the crowd at the unveiling of his official portrait yesterday. Below: The portrait, by artist Tom Menczel, former Tory cabinet ministers Doug Horner and Richard Starke. The unveiling of Dave Hancock’s portrait in the Legislature yesterday may have been presided over by ...

Alberta Politics: Former Alberta premier Dave Hancock to be the subject of a hanging Monday afternoon at the Legislature

PHOTOS: The official portrait of premier Dave Hancock, second-to-last Progressive Conservative premier of Alberta, will not likely look like this, although one could make a strong case it really should. After all, consider what Mr. Hancock was left to deal with by his predecessor, Alison Redford, whose official portrait is shown below at right. Above ...

Alberta Politics: Wildrose reaction to proposed raise for front-line health workers illustrates the party’s rightward shift

PHOTOS: Rob Anderson, on the right, the Wildrose Party’s finance critic under Danielle Smith, at a rally supporting public sector workers in 2012. With him are AUPE President Guy Smith, left, and Alberta Liberal Leader David Swann, centre. Below: The Wildrose Party’s intemperate current finance critic, Derek Fildebrandt, Ms. Smith, and premiers Ed Stelmach and ...

daveberta.ca – Alberta Politics: Notley NDP’s latter-day conversion to Keystone XL boosterism

It has been fascinating to watch the Alberta New Democratic Party transition from being skeptical of oil pipelines as opposition to fairly effective advocates for pipelines as government. While the approval of the Trans-Canada Keystone XL Pipeline from Hardisty to… Continue Reading →

Alberta Politics: ‘Real Leader’ Brad Wall’s government feeds the fluctuations of a boom-bust economy as Alberta stays the course

PHOTOS: The Saskatchewan economy … where it sits right about now. It’s not Brad Wall’s fault!!! Below: Mr. Wall, the “Real Leader” of Western Canada; Saskatchewan Deputy Premier Don Morgan; Saskatchewan Finance Minister Kevin Doherty; and Saskatchewan Federation of Labour President Larry Hubich. OTTAWA What a pleasure it is here in the nation’s capital to ...

Alberta Politics: Oh the irony! Saskatchewan adopts Alberta’s single health region model, hated by Brad Wall’s fervent admirers

PHOTOS: Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall, who Alberta conservatives say is the real leader of Western Canada. Below: Saskatchewan Health Minister Jim Reiter, former Alberta premier Ed Stelmach, and Mr. Stelmach’s health minister, Ron Liepert. Premier Brad Wall’s Saskatchewan Party Government – which all Albertans have been taught by the opposition conservative parties can do no ...

Alberta Politics: A Happy New Year to all – seriously, to all of you – as AlbertaPolitics.ca begins its 10th year of publication

PHOTOS: Some of the high points … This one was taken about the time I broke the story that Danielle Smith would be running for the leadership of the “upstart” Wildrose Party. Below: chats, and photos, with Ed Stelmach, Alison Redford, Jim Prentice and Rachel Notley. Dear Readers, On this day in 2007 I sat ...

Alberta Politics: Merry Christmas to all! Santa is bringing presents for everyone this holiday, regardless of political orientation

PHOTOS: Merry Christmas! Your blogger with a man who can penetrate North American air defences with ease. Russian President Vladimir Putin may not appear exactly as illustrated. (Joke.) Below: Political strategist Stephen Carter with the same blogger; Alberta pollster Janet Brown; Conservative strategist Alan Hallman, who is now associated with Jason Kenney’s Alberta Progressive Conservative ...

Alberta Politics: Is veteran Tory’s bid to run as Liberal in by-election to replace ex-PM a sign of sagging Conservative fortunes nationally?

PHOTOS: Veteran Conservative Lee Richardson with Alberta premier Alison Redford, who he served as principal secretary. Below: Prime minister John Diefenbaker, who Mr. Richardson served as executive assistant, and Alberta premier Peter Lougheed, for whom he was chief of staff. Understanding history requires a long view, and the picture that is emerging from the Reform ...

Alberta Politics: Robo-gaffe: What do you do when caller-ID says it’s a PC on the line and you get the NDP?

PHOTOS: The offending caller ID message (photo found on Twitter). Below: Edmonton-Castle Downs NDP MLA Nicole Goehring, former Edmonton-Castle Downs Progressive Conservative MLA Thomas Lukaszuk and NDP Caucus Outreach Director Garret Spelliscy. Memo to politicians: Make sure – really, really sure – that when you send out a robo-call alerting your constituents to something you’d ...

Alberta Politics: Smoke-Free Alberta asks: Why hasn’t all of the Smoking Reduction Act been enacted?

PHOTOS: Water pipes and flavoured tobacco … Why has Alberta legislation outlawing them not been enacted? There are no secret political messages in this picture, by the way. Below: Alberta Health Minister Sarah Hoffman, NDP MLA Sandra Jansen, and Edmonton Journal Editor Mark Iype. A letter Monday from the Campaign for a Smoke-Free Alberta to ...

daveberta.ca – Alberta Politics: Floor Crossing! What to make of Tory MLA Sandra Jansen joining the NDP?

Progressive Conservative Calgary-North West MLA Sandra Jansen took to the podium with Premier Rachel Notley this afternoon to announce that she is crossing the floor to join the governing New Democratic Party Caucus. It would have been hard to imagine only one year ago that we… Continue Reading →

Alberta Politics: The twists keep coming: Ex PM pitches woo to Wildrosers for Kenney Con coup as candidate cries counter Kudatah!

PHOTOS: “That group of NDP activists was this big!” Jason Kenney is shown at the launch of his campaign to spring a kudatah on the Progressive Conservative Party in this CBC photo grabbed from the Internet. Actually, I have no idea what Mr. Kenney was saying when the CBC photographer snapped the picture. Below: Stephen ...

Alberta Politics: It’s official: Sandra Jansen is now running for the Progressive Conservative leadership

PHOTOS: Progressive Conservative leadership candidate Sandra Jansen, in hat, in the Calgary Pride Parade, photo grabbed from her campaign website. Interestingly, the same photo was used on a Rebel Media page attacking Ms. Jansen. Below: PC leadership front-runner Jason Kenney, political strategist Stephen Carter, who will be working for Ms. Jansen, and interim Liberal Leader ...

Alberta Politics: Five years ago today, Alison Redford was sworn in as premier of Alberta … and the wheels fell off the Tory bus

PHOTOS: Alison Redford takes the oath of office as Alberta’s 14th premier. Below: Ms. Redford speaks her first words as premier of Alberta and is greeted by enthusiastic well-wishers as she walks through the Legislature’s Rotunda. Bottom: Gary Mar, whom Ms. Redford defeated for the leadership of the PC party and the premiership of Alberta. ...

daveberta.ca – Alberta Politics: Notley searches for her Lougheed moment by demanding oil pipelines for Trudeau’s carbon tax

Demanding the federal government help “break the landlock” and support the construction of oil pipelines from Alberta, Premier Rachel Notley and Environment and Parks Minister Shannon Phillips drew a line for Alberta’s support of the Justin Trudeau government’s proposed national carbon… Continue Reading →

daveberta.ca – Alberta Politics: PCs kick off leadership race 5 years after choosing Alison Redford

Alberta’s Progressive Conservatives officially kicked off their leadership race on October 1, 2016 at a party event in Lethbridge. The PC Party formed government in Alberta from 1971 until 2015, when it was reduced to third-place in the Legislative Assembly… Continue Reading →

Alberta Politics: Meet Alberta PC leadership candidate Richard Starke: thoughtful, centrist, kind to animals … and thus probably doomed

PHOTOS: Vermilion-Lloydminster Progressive Conservative MLA Richard Starke, looking appealingly Clint-Eastwood-like in this official portrait from his website, announced yesterday he is seeking the leadership of the Alberta PC Party. Below: NDP Advanced Education Minister Marlin Schmidt, another member of the Legislative Squeeze Box Caucus, and former Speaker Gene Zwozdesky, a caucus member back in the ...

Alberta Politics: Strategist Stephen Carter’s reputation instantly boosts Sandra Jansen’s still-unannounced PC leadership bid

PHOTOS: Political strategist Stephen Carter, who says he’s now advising potential Progressive Conservative leadership candidate Sandra Jansen. Below: Ms. Jansen, who says she’s very close to making a decision on whether to run, and Jason Kenney, so far the only declared candidate in the race. It must be great to have a reputation so highly ...

Alberta Politics: The blogger as art critic: If we’re paying the piper, we should get to call the tune!

PHOTOS: A detail from Liela Chan’s just unveiled portrait of Alison Redford: Below: Ms. Chan’s full portrait, as it now hangs in the Legislature; what we could have had if Thomas Gainsborough (1727-1788) had been around to paint Ms. Redford; what the still unrevealed portrait of Dave Hancock really ought to look like, with apologies ...

Alberta Politics: When then was ‘Now!’ Marking the day Peter Lougheed moved Alberta dramatically to the left

PHOTOS: Peter Lougheed on the campaign trail during the 1970s. Below: A few of the important characters in this story … William Aberhart, Ernest Manning, Danielle Smith and Rachel Notley. Today is the 45th anniversary of Peter Lougheed’s historic election victory in 1971, which brought the Progressive Conservative Party to power with a comfortable majority, ...

daveberta.ca – Alberta Politics: PC Party Superdelegates could block Jason Kenney’s hostile takeover

There are thirty-four days remaining until the Progressive Conservative leadership officially begins on October 1, 2016. The race is already unofficially underway with one candidate in the contest Jason Kenney – the Member of Parliament who launched a hostile takeover campaign earlier in the summer… Continue Reading →

Alberta Politics: Unsatisfying report on leak of former PC leadership candidate’s phone bill fails to answer the questions everyone’s asking

PHOTOS: Thomas Lukaszuk in his political heyday during the summer of 2012, telling a scrum of reporters about his bid to run for the leadership of the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party. Below: Alberta Information and Privacy Commissioner Jill Clayton, former PC premier Alison Redford, and premier pro tempore Dave Hancock, who temporarily replaced Ms. Redford. ...

Alberta Politics: AlbertaPolitics.ca is taking a short break, with possible interruptions, staring now

PHOTO: Don’t be fooled. The plan is for this blog to be closed for the virtual equivalent of overnight, not forever. AlbertaPolitics.ca will be back soon. There hasn’t been a dull moment in Alberta politics for about four years now. Which makes it hard to believe that, before 2011, when Alison Redford stumbled confidently onto ...

Alberta Politics: Wildrose blames NDP for a sensible labour relations practice implemented in 2013 by Alison Redford’s Tories

PHOTOS: Alberta Premier Alison Redford was welcomed to the annual convention of the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees by AUPE President Guy Smith in October 2012. And what does the Wildrose Party make of that? Below: Former Tory Premier Ralph Klein with his pal, former AUPE president Dan MacLennan; Wildrose labour critic Grant Hunter (Airdrie ...