I was originally going to call this post “Newsflash: Brian Mason is outraged!” but I thought that would just be playing into the oversensationalization of this non-issue of a mid-summer news story.
Related to my recent posts about the appointment of Justice Ernie Walter as Chairperson of Alberta’s Electoral Boundaries Commission and the appointment of four Commission members by Premier Ed Stelmach and Liberal Official Opposition leader David Swann, the leader of the 2 MLA NDP caucus is outraged over Swann’s recommended appointments to the Commission.
In duelling media releases from the NDP and Liberals, NDP leader Brian Mason was outraged that Swann didn’t choose the two people Mason recommended. Mason claims that Swann didn’t consult him enough about the choices, even though the two leaders met to discuss the appointments and Mason signed a letter to Swann with recommendations.
According to the Electoral Boundaries Commission Act:
(b) 2 persons, who are not members of the Legislative Assembly, appointed by the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly on the nomination of the Leader of Her Majesty’s loyal opposition in consultation with the leaders of the other opposition parties represented in the Legislative Assembly,
The Act doesn’t specify what ‘consultation’ needs to entail, but the history of childish tension between the Liberals and NDP would have led me to be encouraged that the two leaders had even met to discuss this issue. Alas, the media release and predictable outrage from Mason has likely undermined any good will in the 11 MLA opposition benches.
Next Post: An issue that actually matters.
UPDATE: Tune in! I will be on air with Calgary AM770s Rob Breakenridge disucssing this issue at 8:35pm tonight.
UPDATE (August 7, 2009): You can now listen to the podcast of last night’s The World Tonight on AM770 where Rob Breakenridge and I discuss the Electoral Boundaries Commission issue. NDP leader Brian Mason calls in around the 10 minute and 58 second point in the podcast.