Alberta Politics

Byron Nelson to announce PC leadership bid, pans Kenney’s hostile takeover bid

Calgary lawyer Byron Nelson is expected to announce his plans to seek the leadership of Alberta’s third-place Progressive Conservative Party tomorrow in Calgary. Mr. Nelson was his party’s candidate in Calgary-Bow in the 2015 election and was defeated by New Democrat Deborah Drever.

Early in August, Mr. Nelson took to Facebook to share his thoughts on Jason Kenney’s plans to take over the PC Party and merge it with the Wildrose Party. Here is an excerpt:

“It is, in a sense, the low-effort method of getting rid of the NDP. It is the method of taking two parties whose visions were resoundingly rejected in the last election, and hoping/assuming that there were enough people clinging to those rejected visions to beat the NDP and form government.

It involves no new vision for Alberta, as has been repeatedly seen by the comments and responses of those who tout it. It merely answers that it will govern in a “conservative manner”. Surely we can all understand and agree, based on the elections of the past 15 months, that simply trying to unite a large group, and promising to govern in a “conservative manner” is a roadmap to electoral defeat. Voters need to be inspired by a vision and a plan. When you don’t have a vision and a plan, you will not get people to vote for you.

The fact that he “unite the right” option for the PC party is countered by the “rebuilding the party” option, is an interesting study in sharp contrasts. The former involves no effort, just a suggestion that we can duct-tape two parties together and win. The latter involves maximum effort by many people. The former offers no vision for the future other than a bland promise of governing conservatively. The latter produces a specific vision and a plan.”

Mr. Nelson joins Mr. Kenney and former Calgary-Varsity MLA Donna Kennedy-Glans as the third candidate in the PC leadership race, which officially kicks off on October 1, 2016. Another Calgary lawyer, Doug Schweitzer, announced his was not entering the race last week. The party will host an all-candidates forum during its policy meeting in Red Deer on November 4 to 6, 2016.

3 replies on “Byron Nelson to announce PC leadership bid, pans Kenney’s hostile takeover bid”

Lost a nomination to Linda Johnson in 2012. Lost an election to Deborah Drever in 2015. Will no one (with a record of accomplishments) step forward to challenge Kenney? The clock is ticking…

I’m sure no one needs an explanation of what happened across the province during the 2015 election. Let’s hope that going forward people will take the time to check their assumptions and make informed decisions about candidates so that we don’t repeat the mistakes that have gotten us to where we are now.

A candidate who can bring a fresh yet educated vision to the party is a welcome addition to this race. I’m looking forward to seeing who else jumps in the ring.

Since Ralph Klien, stepped down. There has yet to be a conservative leader with a vision 3 Leaders and one interm leader in the span of a decade managed to run Alberta right into the ground by trying to keep those old conservative values in check.

The honest truth unless the vision scraps the old conservative cherished values the party holds so tight and comes up with a new doctrine for its values. There not going to win. The good ol boys club has no connection with the current generation.

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