The by-election in Drumheller-Stettler was called yesterday to replace former Finance Minister Shirley McClellan following her resignation in January 2007. The by-election is set for June 12.
Candidates include Alberta Liberal Tom Dooley, a local rancher and former County Councillor and Deputy Reeve. The Alberta Liberals didn’t nominate a candidate in this riding during the 2004 election, so it should be interesting to see how a well-known candidate like Dooley places.
PC candidate Jack Hayden is a consultant and a former County Reeve. Hayden was also a rural organizer in Tory Premier Ed Stelmach’s leadership campaign.
Alberta Alliance candidate Dave France was his party’s candidate in the 2004 election and was also, according to the Alliance Press Release, nominated as the Alliance candidate in December 2007. The Alliance’s support in Drumheller-Stettler will be telling as to whether the Alliance is really dying, as has been suggested (I’ve heard a rumour that Alliance leader and MLA Paul Hinman is seeking the PC nomination in Cardston-Taber-Warner).
Water has become a growing issue in rural Alberta and in the Drumheller area – especially since the proposed development of a shopping complex and racetrack at Balzac would divert water from the Red Deer River which flows through Drumheller for the time being (see more here)
Other nominated candidates include Social Credit candidate Larry Davidson, Green candidate Jennifer Wigmore, and New Democratic candidate Richard Bough.
Drumheller-Stettler was created in 2004 and includes portions of the former Drumheller-Chinook and Lacombe-Stettler ridings. Here are the results from the last election.
Shirley McClellan, PC – 6,770
Dave France, Alliance – 1,413
Richard Bough, NDP – 890
Eileen Walker, Alberta Party – 616
David Carnegie, Separation Party – 465
Mary-Lou Kloppenburg, Social Credit – 279