Proving again why he should never be trusted with the responsibility to stand-in for a cabinet minister at a press conference, Calgary-West Member of Parliament Rob Anders, inappropriately used his time at the podium to boast his support for Progressive Conservative leadership candidate Ted Morton.
This is hardly the first time Mr. Anders has displayed such buffoonery. Before he was an MP, he worked as a professional heckler with the Oklahoma Republicans.
The inappropriate Mr. Anders is well-known for a hardcore right-wing conservative views. Many Canadians may remember him as the only MP to vote against making Nelson Mandela an honorary citizen of Canada. He defended his actions by stating that Mr. Mandela was a communist and a terrorist and later refused to take a phone call from the former President of South Africa.
Despite his comments that his support for Dr. Morton is an effort to “avoid a civil war in the province of Alberta over the next election,” his recent public support of the Wildrose’s Danielle Smith suggests that he is simply interested in supporting conservatives that fit his ideological brand.
A significant number of Anders loyalists on Conservative Party of Canada board of directors in Calgary-West (not to be confused with the former board) are also hitching their political careers to Ms. Smith’s party.
Mr. Anders’ former Riding President Andrew Constantinidis is the nominated Wildrose candidate in the provincial constituency of Calgary-West. Mr. Anders constituency assistant Russell Hillier is seeking the Wildrose nomination in Calgary-North West (As noted in my previous post, Mr. Hillier is also a founder of the anti-immigration and anti-multicultualism group Canadian Culture and Integration Society). Another member of Mr. Anders’ board of directors, Tim Dyck, is seeking the Wildrose nomination in Calgary-Bow. The three Wildrose candidates were given a platform to speak at Mr. Anders’ recent Calgary Stampede BBQ.
Other members of Mr. Anders’ constituency organization are also prominent members of the Wildrose. Peter Csillag is a Vice-President of the Wildrose Campus Club at the University of Calgary. John DeRinzy is the President Wildrose association in Calgary-Bow. Hermina Dykxhoorn is the Vice-President Policy for the Wildrose association in Calgary-West. Paul Hamnett is the Vice-President Communications of the Wildrose association in Calgary-West. Until recently, Candice Malcolm was the Executive Assistant to Ms. Smith. Joseph Zamuda is the Treasurer of the Wildrose association Calgary-West.
After almost forty-years of PC governments, Albertans are in the mood for political change. I have a hard time believing that most Albertans have the appetite for the type of change that Rob Anders and his loyalists have in mind.