Laurie Blakeman now the longest-serving opposition MLA and other #ableg milestones.

Laurie Blakeman MLA Edmonton-Centre

Laurie Blakeman

This week Edmonton-Centre Liberal MLA Laurie Blakeman was recognized in the Legislative Assembly as being the “longest-serving member to serve exclusively in opposition in Alberta’s history. Ms. Blakeman was elected on March 11, 1997 and, as Speaker Gene Zwozdesky noted, she has served continuously since that time for a total of 5,876 days over the course of five-terms.

Gene Zwozdesky

Gene Zwozdesky

Ms. Blakeman surpassed David Duggan, who served in opposition from June 28, 1926, to May 4, 1942, for a total of 5,790 days. A historical irony is that had Speaker Zwozdesky, who was first elected as a Liberal in 1993, not crossed the floor to the Progressive Conservatives in 1998, he would now own this new record.

According to my estimation, the longest-serving opposition MLA who did not serve exclusively in opposition, is Walt Buck. Mr. Buck represented Clover Bar in the Social Credit government from 1967 to 1971 and in the Social Credit opposition from 1971 until 1982, as an Independent MLA from 1982 until 1984, and as a Representative Party MLA from 1984 until his retirement from politics in 1989. Mr. Buck recently passed away.

Here are some other Alberta Legislature milestones:

8 thoughts on “Laurie Blakeman now the longest-serving opposition MLA and other #ableg milestones.

  1. Alvin Finkel

    Congratulations to Laurie Blakeman for keeping the faith and staying on in the legislature so many years, always as one of the legislature’s most progressive voices. She has also been a strong voice for cooperation among progressive parties rather than for continued competition that mainly serves the interests of the Right (yes, yes, I know the argument that having many choices on your ballot is supposed to be a good thing, but the outcomes of Alberta elections suggest that in fact for progressives, it’s just the opposite). Hard to say if Laurie or Rachel Notley is the best premier we’ll never have. But hopefully they’ll both stick in there for a long time defending the interests of the underdog.

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  3. Banana Phone

    Alvin, change only comes when enough people wake up. How do you wake up bumpkins who are more interested in hockey beer and pizza, than being thoughful of the world they live in? Most AB’s believe whatever they read and whatever they have been told by biased media. Willingly selfinflicted and entrenched mxntally rxtarded thinking is a hard thing to fix. Its much easier teaching a donkey circus tricks, at least they have the ability to listen to simple commands.

    Change AB.

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  4. Christine Bennett

    What about giving Peter Sandhu an award for leaving up election signs the longest. There is still one where the Anthony Henday and the Manning connect. Come on! Even if he is a Conservative doesn’t he have to play by the rules eventually.

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  5. Jonathan

    I would echo Alvin’s sentiments. The constituents of Edmonton Centre have been and continue to be extremely well served!

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  6. David Harrigan

    I too agree with Alvin, although my sentiment is that Rachel is the best Premier that one day we will have.

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  7. Banana Phone

    @Christine, I bet PXter Left that one sign up, to see if anyone would be smart enough to notice! Never discount this extremely capable, well spoken, eloquent and intelligent MLA.

    @Harrigan, history has shown Albertans, don’t really care about a compassionate, or thoughtful intelligent leader.

    Voters in AB, vote only callous, doublespeaking, remorseless, bait and switch ,lying, conniving, shrewd, unethical, immoral, careless, deceiving, reckless, tough talking loud mouth psychopaths who casually dehumanize others and spin the truth to how it suits them the best.

    That has been proved, you see the slate of Tory MLAs, candidates and those that have become premier. It also helps if you can defile others, it seems. Voters sadly, seem to truly gravitate to leadership candidates with those reviling qualities.

    Collectively somewhere in the AB voter psyche, some rudimentary humanity, intelligence and common sense is dangerously lacking. Its not that way in other provinces.

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  8. Concerned Albertan

    I concur with Alvin. While so many politicians avoid anything that smacks of controversy — even if it would be a long-term benefit for the public –Blakeman has remained open-minded and positive about multi-party cooperation. Kudos to her in understanding that cooperation is the only path to success for progressives in Alberta.

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