Alberta Politics

4 ways out of the PC leadership crisis


The increasingly public struggle between Premier Alison Redford and a group of disgruntled MLAs in the Progressive Conservative Party continues this week.

Following Monday’s announcement by Calgary-Varsity PC MLA Donna Kennedy-Glans that she would sit as an Independent MLA, two more PC MLAs are publicly considering leaving.

Matt Jeneroux MLA Edmonton South West
Matt Jeneroux

Edmonton-South West PC MLA Matt Jeneroux mused that he is “taking time to reflect” about whether he should remain in the government caucus. Edmonton-Riverview MLA Steve Young, already , is also considering leaving the PC caucus.

Government House leader Robin Campbell says that PC MLAs are free to speak their mind. But the lack of discipline in the caucus suggests the real reason is that any attempt to silence the disgruntled MLAs could lead to a mass departure from the government caucus.

At a press conference held yesterday afternoon, party president Jim McCormick gave a luke-warm support for Ms. Redford’s leadership. Mr. McCormick also sent an email to PC Party supporters, explaining that the “work plan” issued to the premier last weekend does not exist on paper. There is no plan.

Meanwhile, Lougheed-era cabinet minister Allan Warrack has added his name to the list of Tories calling on the premier to resign.

With the current situation in flux, here are four possible scenarios that could play out over the next few weeks:

Redford resigns – Pressure from her caucus and party results in Ms. Redford resigning as Premier of Alberta and leader of the PC Party. The disgruntled MLAs remain in the government caucus. An interim premier, possibly Deputy Premier Dave Hancock, is appointed and a leadership contest is scheduled. MLAs hope that a new leader can reinvent and reenergize their aging party before the next election.

Redford stays, more MLAs leave – Ms. Redford and her loyalists resist the pressure from disgruntled MLAs and supporters calling for the premier’s resignation. Some of the ten MLAs, possibly as many as ten, leave the PC caucus to sit as Independent MLAs, causing a severe rift in the party and the caucus.

Kumbaya” – The disgruntled MLAs resolve their issues with Ms. Redford and she pledges to change her leadership style in order to improve her relationship with her caucus and party. The Tory dynasty continues as peace and harmony is returned to the government benches.

Conflict continues – Ms. Redford refuses to resign and the disgruntled MLAs continue to voice their discontent with the premier’s leadership style. The party and caucus are torn apart in the political fight. Wildrose leader Danielle Smith rejoices and leads her party to win the 2016 election.

9 replies on “4 ways out of the PC leadership crisis”

Get out your crystal ball, Daveberta and suggest a timeline for your scenario. It’s gotta be quick. Not much time to 2016.

This PC Party has become a country club for power seekers. It’s not nearly close to what it looked like when Peter Lougheed was leading.

Time to take out the trash.

Redford, Horner, Hancock, Horne, Lukaszuk: they are all part of the problem. They cannot be part of the solution.

I’m a centrist in Edmonton praying for a WRP victory in 2016. Let’s get real for a second. Danielle has the stuff to lead our province effectively for at least a term; Alison doesn’t. No matter where you lie on the spectrum, you have to put your province and country first.

Ice woman anyone? Am wondering why Redford considered politics at all. She’s as cold as ice and doesn’t like being around people. I must be missing something.

“Time to take out the trash.”
That’s been the case since Ralph took over the leadership.

This is not a new phenomenon. This sense of entitlement and condescension has been around for decades. The moral indignation expressed by the likes of my hitherto spineless MLA, Len Webber, was clearly absent when Ralph would go out in public in one of his Ford-like drunken stupors and verbally bully and assault the downtrodden and dispossessed in our society – sadly and ironically, these were the same people who supported Ralph in his first bid for mayor. Where was the moral indignation when Ralph consolidated virtually all the political power in the massively expanded public affairs bureau at the expense of the party and, more significantly, the elected legislative assembly? Where was the indignation when the party elites insulted and demeaned anyone and everyone who had the temerity to disagree the the elites and power brokers in Edmonton and labelling them as anti-Albertan?

On the plus side, no matter the motivation, it’s nice to seem that at least some of the sheeple in caucus might actually be evolving a sort of proto-spine. (Creationists take note of evolution in action before your very eyes.)

Last paragraph should read:

On the plus side, no matter the motivation, it’s nice to see that at least some of the sheeple in caucus might actually be evolving a sort of proto-spine. (Creationists take note of evolution in action before your very eyes.)

see not seem

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