TweetDecember 29, 2015 Column by: Dirk Pranter, Provincial Affairs columnist, Edmonton Journal-Sun Tories re-elected for 14th time A snap mid-Summer election returned Jim Prentice’s renamed “Conservative Party of Alberta” to its fourteenth term as government. In an unexpected twist of fate, Finance Minister Danielle Smith was defeated in her home riding by Wildrose Party leader Randy Thorsteinson. But don’t feel sorry for … Continue reading What a year 2015 has been in Alberta politics!
Your blogger with Alberta Premier Jim Prentice. Your blogger with another Alberta premier, whose name escapes him at the moment, and with a former Alberta opposition leader.
Maybe it’s evidence of the “seven year itch”? Leastways, it was seven years ago on Dec. 31, 2007, that I started this blog, promising commentary on politics, baseball and Uechi-ryu karate. It was called St. Albert Diary.
Well, I managed to deliver one of those promised topics. I think maybe I wrote about karate once or twice. Baseball? Not so much.
Eventually I changed the name to Alberta Diary, since I seemed (Read more…)
Former premier Alison Redford at the moment of her leadership campaign victory in 2011. Former opposition leader Danielle Smith in a typical campaign pose last summer.
Back in the mists of time, or rather, Time, there used to be a regular December feature called “Man of the Year.”
That was amended to “Person of the Year” in the 28th year of Progressive Conservative rule here in Alberta, and no doubt many in that party are still upset by the change, being symptomatic, as it were, of that other kind of PC they so love to disparage.
Other (Read more…)
TweetAs 2014 reminded us, politics can be an extraordinarily unpredictable and forecasting the future can be a tricky business for political pundits. Aside from the obvious choice of Premier Jim Prentice, here is a list of a dozen Alberta MLAs worth watching in 2015. Rob Anderson (Airdrie): The outspoken rookie MLA left the PC Caucus in 2010 … Continue reading A Dozen Alberta MLAs worth watching in 2015 →
TweetAs the collapse of the Wildrose Party and speculation about Alberta’s next provincial budget dominate political discussions, one of the most politically important discussions impacting governance in our province next year could be about the creation of City Charters. In his first month as Premier, Jim Prentice met with Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson and Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi … Continue reading Iveson and Nenshi in strong position for City Charters →
Former NDP leader Brian Mason in a couple of typical poses, above and below. I’ll bet you didn’t know he was a terrific political blogger too!
Jim Prentice is Alberta’s first Wildrose premier and he will soon call a snap election to ensure he can push forward a Wildrose program of using temporarily low oil prices as justification to roll back public sector salaries, attack pensions, reintroduce health care premiums and lay off nurses and teachers.
This sharp and credible warning comes from someone who should be better known as a political blogger than he is, a shrewd analyst of (Read more…)
The captain of the RMS Wildrose and her officers slip quietly away from their sinking ship in the darkness. Actual Wildrose leaders may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: Wildrose Leader Danielle Smith and Wildrose House Leader Rob Anderson. Both are expected to be rewarded for abandoning ship with cabinet posts in PC Premier Jim Prentice’s government.
As of today – even before we are certain of everything that has happened in the last 48 hours or what will happen in the next 48 – we can be confident of this: the Wildrose Party is finished.
I do not mean (Read more…)
Premier Jim Prentice points the way for public spending in Alberta now that our boom has gone bust again. Oil prices, ya know… But read the Reaper’s grim lips: “No new taxes!” Actual Alberta premiers may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: Finance Minister Robin Campbell, Infrastructure Minister Manmeet Bhullar and Labour Minister Ric McIver, three of the Seven Horsepersons of the Alberta Fiscal Apocalypse
Guess what, we’re broke again out here in The Richest Place on Earth! ™
Yesterday, citing the spectacular recent drop in oil prices, Alberta Premier Jim Prentice pulled his Grim Reaper’s hood over (Read more…)
Tweet“They don’t know what to do with tough economic times. It was easy enough to govern when the money was flowing in, when things were going well. They took all the credit for it at that time. It’s much harder to govern, and the mark of a good government is how they handle it, when […]
A pensive Ralph Klein, maybe thinking about his worst political mistakes. Below: Jim Prentice and Alison Redford, also Alberta premiers. Premier, you’re no Ralph Klein!
Oh, well … that changes everything!
All sarcasm aside, people, I think that ship has sailed, actually …
Bill 10, legislation designed to make it hard to form gay-straight alliances in schools, having turned into an embarrassing flop that won’t go away, Premier Jim Prentice yesterday introduced Bill 2, a law that in the words of the headline on the government’s news release, “aims to improve accountability and restore trust with (Read more…)
Alberta civil servants: do you get the feeling someone may have their eye on you? Below: Agents of change Richard Dicerni, Ian Brodie, Oryssia Lennie and Steve West.
Premier Jim Prentice says he intends to “reform” Alberta’s public service, fix its low morale, reverse its “shocking” turnover and deal with its other “very significant problems.”
He’s appointed a former senior federal civil servant and well-connected business professor to be his “agent of change,” along with a couple of right-hand persons to assist with this change agentry. Their work will start immediately.
Sounds way better, huh, than former premier Alison (Read more…)
TweetLast week, the wheels were falling off the Wildrose bus. This week, the passengers have flung open the emergency exits and started leaping out into traffic. The Wildrose Official Opposition started the month of November with 17 MLAs and might be ending it with only fourteen. Today, Progressive Conservative leader Jim Prentice, flanked by Little Bow […]
Are the wheels falling off the Wildrose bus, which may or may not look exactly as illustrated any more? Below: Beleaguered Wildrose Leader Danielle Smith, Taber-Warner-Cardston MLA Gary Bikman and Wildrose House Leader Rob Anderson.
These may be happy days for the Progressive Conservatives under Premier Jim Prentice, but the bloom is definitely off Alberta’s Wildrose Opposition.
Just weeks ago seen as a sure bet to be the province’s next premier, Wildrose Opposition Leader Danielle Smith is today buffeted by an embarrassing scrap between her party’s social conservatives and socially progressive members over LGBTQ rights, troubled by questions about her (Read more…)
TweetA short few months ago, it almost felt inevitable that the Wildrose Party would sweep into a majority government at the next election. They were up in the polls and the long-time governing Progressive Conservatives looked corrupt, broken and battered. But over the past few weeks, it appears the Official Opposition is stumbling into disarray. Leader […]
Steady as she goes! Wildrose Leader Danielle Smith, centre, works to keep party stalwarts, on either side, on the right course, which would be not too far to the right, of course. Alberta Premier Prentice, at the wheel above, tries to get the earnest Wildrosers to take a wrong turn. Actual Alberta conservative party leaders, supporters and their political vehicles may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: The real Mr. Prentice and the real Ms. Smith.
Both of Alberta’s right-wing parties held general meetings this weekend – the ever-ruling Progressive Conservatives in Banff and the so-far never-ruling Wildrose Party in (Read more…)
TweetPremier Jim Prentice is warming up for a victory lap as Progressive Conservatives loyalists gather at the posh Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel for the party’s annual general meeting on November 14 and 15, 2014. Mr. Prentice will join the convention basking in the glow of an impressive first two months as Premier and four recent by-election wins as […]
Sometime toward the end of November, the Alberta government will release their 2nd quarter fiscal update. Finance Minister Robin Campbell will likely tell us that the second quarter was another good quarter but that the good news is coming to an end and the 1st quarter projection of a $3 Billion bonus will be revised. The reason of course is that oil prices are down again. The budget projected $95 oil (WTI) and today’s spot price is under $79. For every drop of one dollar in the price of oil (WTI) the government treasury loses $215 million.
As much as Premier Jim Prentice wants (Read more…)
This just in from Alberta’s two conservative parties. Below: former Alberta Health Services CFO Allaudin Merali, Alberta Premier Jim Prentice, MLA Joe Anglin (CBC Photo), Wildrose Leader Danielle Smith, former health minister Fred Horne.
Alberta’s governing Progressive Conservative Party and its Opposition Wildrose Party, in addition to sharing an identical right-wing ideology, face a similar problem this morning, a situation and a person each party would very much like to see go away as quickly as possible.
In each case the circumstances have the potential to embarrass each party seriously enough with voters to impact its chances in the next (Read more…)
TweetIn a move designed to quash any further internal party dissent, Wildrose MLAs rallied around their leader yesterday by unanimously requesting their party’s executive committee cancel a leadership review that Danielle Smith requested last week. The sign of caucus unity came shortly after Sundre-Rocky Mountain House-Rimbey MLA Joe Anglin announced he was leaving the Official Opposition Caucus to sit as […]
TweetCiting a “civil war” within the Wildrose Party, MLA Joe Anglin has decided to leave the Official Opposition caucus to sit as an Independent MLA. Mr. Anglin said in a Facebook message posted this morning that he did so in advance of today’s caucus meeting, where leader Danielle Smith was expected to introduce a motion […]