alberta politics notes 8/06/2010

Edmonton-Mill Woods MLA Carl Benito at the Premier's Capital Ex Pancake Breakfast on July 27, 2010.

A promise is a promise, except if it’s a Carl Benito promise. SEE Magazine and the Edmonton Journal are taking Edmonton-Mill Woods PC MLA Carl Benito to task over not fulfilling his election promise to donate his entire MLA salary to a scholarship fund. According to Mr. Benito, when he promised to donate his entire salary, he did not really mean his entire salary. Mr. Benito is having a pretty tough time arguing against his own statements from election night in 2008:

On Monday night, Benito repeated his promise to donate his MLA salary (about $75,000) to a scholarship program. The idea was created to sway young people into more positive areas and away from youth-related crime, he said.
We’ve put that in writing and we’re 100-per-cent committed to it. I strongly believe in giving back to the community. The young people in Mill Woods are the future of our community.”

Since he was first elected in 2008, Mr. Benito has championed the noble causes of establishing Alberta’s Official Mushroom and trying to bring the Miss Universe Pageant to Alberta. He also described his constituents as “simple people” during a Legislative Committee meeting.
– The Government of Alberta has launched another advertising campaign promoting the oilsands as Greenpeace ninjas grab international attention by hanging a banner off the Calgary Tower.
– Two former Liberal MLAs have announced their intentions to stand in the next provincial election. Rick Miller will stand in Edmonton-Rutherford and Weslyn Mather will seek to reclaim her former riding of Edmonton-Mill Woods against the previously mentioned PC MLA Carl Benito.
– Party Vice-President Debbie Cavaliere has been chosen as the interim President of the Liberal Party, filling the vacancy left by Tony Sansotta. Ms. Cavaliere is a former Trustee with the Edmonton Catholic School District and was the Liberal candidate in Edmonton-Meadowlark during the 2008 election. Ms. Cavaliere joined the Liberals after being defeated by Dr. Raj Sherman in that constituency’s PC candidate nomination.
– The Wildrose Alliance has officially opened up candidate nominations in thirteen constituencies across Alberta.
– Two time candidate Michael Cormican is seeking the Federal Liberal nomination in Lethbridge. Mr. Cormican placed third with 9.3% of the vote in the 2008 election. The Conservatives have nominated Jim Hillyer and NDP Mark Sandilands.
– Edmonton City Councillor Ben Henderson will launch his re-election campaign in Ward 8 on August 9 at the Forest Heights-Terrace Community Hall at 5:30pm. Councillor Henderson was first elected in 2007 and is married to Edmonton-Centre MLA Laurie Blakeman.
Don Koziak, son of former PC cabinet minister Julian Koziak, kicked off his campaign for Mayor of Edmonton by laying out a bizarre anti-LRT platform. Mr. Koziak ran unsuccessfully against Mayor Stephen Mandel in 2007 and has made three unsuccessful bids for City Council (1995, 1998, and 2004). He was briefly nominated as the PC candidate in Edmonton-Calder in 2001 before resigning for personal reasons.

Read more in the Alberta Politics Notes archive.

15 thoughts on “alberta politics notes 8/06/2010

  1. Good Ol' Reformer

    Carl Benito, Peter Sandhu, David Xiao, Doug Elniski, Naresh Bhardwaj, Janice Sarich, etc. All those dead weight PC backbenchers must go in the next election. Not only are they lazy and arrogant, they just sit there and rake in tens of thousands of dollars of taxpayers money doing nothing.

    For example, in 2009, Benito earned $142,310, $23,000 of which were for sitting on Tory-only committees behind closed doors with no public minutes or documents or records.

    To the poeple of Mill Woods: is this liar worth all this much?

    Reply
  2. Good Ol' Reformer

    The problem with the 40% of Albertans who support this government is that they vote PC, out of custom or habit or longing to the Laugheed days or whatever, then they hold their collective breath and hope those MLAs they voted for turn out OK. No research, no scrutiny, no effort goes into the voting “process.”

    What’s worse is that some people don’t take into consideration the performance of opposition MLAs or the need for an effective opposition to hold the government to account.

    Could Stelmach and his gang have given themselves that 34% increase had the opposition had 30 members (that’s Liberal, NDP, Alliance combined)?

    Remember people, Stelmach didn’t need 72 seats in 2008, he only needed 42 to form government and that would still have been a majority!!!

    Reply
  3. Brian Dell

    A quibble with the above post: “Wildrose Alliance” should just be referred to as Wildrose unless the commentator feels a need to use the full name. “Alliance” should never be used on its own. That’s the view of the current party, anyway.

    Reply
  4. Neal

    Mill Woods has had a string of bad MLAs. While Benito is obviously a liar and quite useless in the Legislature, his presence does allow our community leagues and other bodies to once again access the provincial funds which the PCs tend to dole out in greater amounts to PC held ridings.

    Prior to Benito we had the invisible Weslyn Mather, who did little to provide effective opposition. Now that she has announced she is running again, Mill Woods has to choose between these two deadweights. At least with the PCs our local groups get funding. What a sad choice to have to make.

    Reply
  5. Brian

    We need to increase MLA pay further. Look at the talent it attracts with people like Paul Hinman. By paying more, we will have a better Wildrose opposition.

    Reply
  6. Wayne

    They DO NOT need to feed of the public any further. They don’t work for the money they make now. What we need to do is create a system where if they don’t live up to what they are required to do and lie we can remove them at once.

    Put the control back in the hands of the tax payers where it belongs.

    Reply
  7. Wayne

    Just wondering if anyone listen to Carl lie his ass off on the radio the other day about donating his salary? What a piece of work this guy is.

    Reply
  8. PC Watcher

    I think all MLA’s who do Puffball questions are political deadwood. Notably, Ellerslie and Millwoods and filled with laods and loads of Pork and Puffball.

    While it is good to see all types of people running for politics, Alberta is progressive and rich because of its mix of many different cultures, the party should do a better job of evaluating potential PC MLA candidates before they are allowed to run. People who lack intellectual and political depth should not be on the chopping board. Higher standards must be met.

    The voters in ridings should not be providing welfare to political deadwood, they deserve better.

    We want peformers, men with vision and direction and want MLA candidates who already come with stellar report cards.

    PC Party insiders take note of that.

    Reply
  9. Midge

    “We want performers, men – AND WOMEN – with vision”

    What else can I say?? We still ignore, without thinking, over 1/2 the population when we look for leaders that have that vision and direction. MLAs like Notley, Callahasen and Blakeman have the intellectual and political depth that we need in our politicians and any one of them is miles ahead of the Puffballers and useless seat fillers.

    Reply
  10. PC Watcher

    @Midge,

    The problem with Liberals and NDP is that they have no financially and fiscally responsible plan on how to maintain a sustainable and low debt public service to the voters.

    Everybody has ideas, but most Albertans have a limit to how much they are willing to subsidize government services for those that do not contribute that greatly to the tax base.

    Albertans are progressive and will share, but NDP and Libs have grand visions, like High School children, lots of bright ideas, but not a clue on how responsibly finance those bright ideas, without racking up huge public debt and getting future generations to pay for those ideas, just like they do in Saskatchewan and BC.

    Reply
  11. PC Watcher

    @Midge,

    You are right, we need women too. I did not mean exclusively men, I should have said “people” instead of men, that was very unprogressive of me.

    Reply
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