Alberta Politics

Alison Redford resigns as MLA for Calgary-Elbow

Alberta Progressive Conservative Election Jim Prentice Alison Redford
All PC Party leadership candidates are taking aim at Ms. Redford, trying to place the blame for every mistake the government has made for the past two years solely on her.

One-hundred and thirty-six days after Alison Redford was forced to resign as Premier of Alberta, she has announced that she will resign as the MLA for Calgary-Elbow.

Thomas Lukaszuk Alison Redford Alberta
During happier times: Alison Redford and Thomas Lukaszuk

Through an opinion-editorial published in the Edmonton Journal and Calgary Herald, the former premier defended her record as premier and  refused to apologize for the misdeeds and scandals that occurred during her time as Premier of Alberta.

“I recognize that mistakes were made along the way. In hindsight, there were many things I would have done differently. That said, I accept responsibility for all the decisions I have made.”

Ms. Redford had been facing intense pressure to resign as MLA after months of controversy, including a leaked draft of a damning Auditor General report criticizing her expensive travel habits on the government dime.

The full report from Auditor General Merwan Saher is scheduled to be released on tomorrow. Ms. Redford resigned today.

This week, her former deputy premier called on Progressive Conservative MLAs to hold an emergency meeting to remove her from the governing caucus. PC leadership candidate Thomas Lukaszuk, the front man for Ms. Redford’s brutal funding cuts to Alberta’s colleges and universities, continues to take advantage of any opportunity to attack the former premier.

And he was not alone. All PC Party leadership candidates have taken aim at Ms. Redford, trying to place the blame for every mistake the government has made for the past two years solely on her.

Mr. Lukaszuk’s main opponent, bank executive Jim Prentice, has tried his best to avoid connecting himself in anyway to his party’s former leader. The front-runner refuses to even mention Ms. Redford by name when speaking to the media.

But while Mr. Prentice is aiming for a complete public divorce from his predecessor, he cannot escape the fact that the majority of his supporters in the PC caucus also supported Ms. Redford.

Ric McIver, the arch-conservative dark horse of the PC leadership race, did not ask Ms. Redford to resign, but was also critical of his former leader.

Ms. Redford’s resignation means that a by-election will need to be called in the Calgary-Elbow constituency within the next six months (by February 5, 2015). This will be the second by-election in Calgary-Elbow since 2007, when former Premier Ralph Klein retired from politics. The Liberals won that by-election.

Kennedy-Glans requests a return

Donna Kennedy Glans MLA Calgary Varsity
Donna Kennedy-Glans

In a strange move that will now be buried under the news of Ms. Redford’s most recent resignation, Independent MLA Donna Kennedy-Glans chose the middle of the summer to distribute a media release declaring that she wants to rejoin the PC caucus. Ms. Kennedy-Glans infamously left the PC caucus days before Ms. Redford’s resignation, saying that she was “increasingly convinced that elements of this 43-year old government are simply unable to make the changes needed to achieve that dream of a better Alberta.” It is unclear what has changed in the past five months to make her change her mind. 

As Stephen Carter penned on his Calgary Herald blog, Ms. Kennedy-Glans, a) wants a spot in Mr. Prentice’s cabinet, and b) does not want to chance being challenged by a ‘star’ PC candidate in the next election. All the respect that Ms. Kennedy-Glans earned when she left the government on principle on appears to have been lost with this seemingly politically opportunistic move.

7 replies on “Alison Redford resigns as MLA for Calgary-Elbow”

On Nov. 23, 2013 Redford got 77% support in the leadership review. Look at the smiling Tories who stood behind her at the podium. They all cut education money, attacked public workers, & slashed funding for persons with developmental disabilities. This isn’t all about expensive plane rides. Redford is part of a bad government. They broke their promises. We can’t trust them. Albertans should kick these Tories out the door.

i was so hopeful the PC Party could turn around from the disaster of Klein. I voted for my PC candidate in the election for the fist time since Lougheed and I am completely disappointed. Blaming Redford for the incompetence is a copout. My PC MLA backed her 100% until she was kicked out now they blame her for everything that went wrong. I am never voting PC again.

Please keep up the awesome job you do with this blog Dave. You are my go-to source for politics news.

“Mistakes have been made” is a major understatement. That aside, I’m actually very disappointed that she resigned her seat. I wish she stayed on, so that she can suffer further public humiliation in front of Alberta taxpayers when the AG report comes out, as well as the spectacle of seeing a party kicking its former leader out of caucus. I also wanted to see how the candidates deal with her presence during the entire PC leadership campaign.

Dave good blog. KimB others, if you are a true conservative, vote WR, if you want the rich to pay for everything, ND, if you want a better progressive option to the Tories, Libs are the only way to go.

DT…nobody in that caucus has the balls nor the courage, to speak out on what is right and ethical on behalf of Albertans. Shame on that Tory caucus for the Johny-come-late fake outrage we see now. Silent for so long, all of them. Where were they when they should have spoken up?…looking after their own positions first, not serving the voters. These guys never change. They are mediocre pretenders and don’t deserve office. The last 4 yrs has been a dog and pony show.

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