Alberta Politics

Premier Kenney’s 54-minute long PowerPoint lecture

While Alberta Premier Jason Kenney’s warnings about COVID-19 during his April 7 televised address were on-point, the same cannot be said for his attempt to explain the province’s COVID-19 modelling during an April 8 press conference.

Kenney took to the stage in the Legislature press room and delivered a 54-minute long PowerPoint presentation during which he meandered and was clearly unprepared and unfamiliar with the content of the presentation. At many points during the press conference he was simply reading the text on the slides.

It was one of the strangest press conferences I have ever seen and it was a stark contrast from his clear and concise messaging from the night before.

We should all be a little more forgiving of our political leaders as they respond to crises in the moment, but it was clear that the Premier was wading into unfamiliar territory the moment he clicked on the first slide.

It was perhaps a case of too much micro-managing on Kenney’s part.

Usually a pretty competent political communicator, Kenney’s performance has been all over the map during the COVID-19 pandemic. While it appears clear that he would like more media focus on the government’s economic and political agenda, the Premier should leave the scientific presentations to the public health and medical professionals, like Dr. Deena Hinshaw and Dr. Verna Yiu.

3 replies on “Premier Kenney’s 54-minute long PowerPoint lecture”

The winner of this years Stephen Harper Micro Manager of the Year award is … drum roll … Premier Jason Kenney.

You might think he can easily collect his award, as he seems to have a lot of time on his hands, but that would be wrong. No doubt, Mr. Kenney will not be available as he is busy doing something not particularly useful, necessary or even his job, like going to the airport to inspect border security procedures, or giving long presentations that go on like Fidel Castro’s.

I realize the opportunities for photo ops and appearing to doing something or just appearing a lot, are tempting for politicians, but really it is the empty calorie, junk food of politics. Yes, there isn’t a lot on TV now, but people still really don’t want to endure hours of watching politicians flapping their gums more than necessary. There are old movies and netflix which are entertaining and provide a welcome break particularly from the the doom and gloom of our more dour politicians, some of whom should also take the advise – go home and stay home, when there is nothing more useful to be done by them.

The last thing we need right now is for any of our top AHS/public health officers to step down. We cannot afford to lose them right now. Here’s hoping they are treated with respect and that boundaries are not overstepped. Most of all, I hope that their advice is heeded and not set aside in favor of politics. They are the experts. We should listen to them.

One of the better comments I saw about that presentation was that it was more an attempt to run-out-the-clock so that no questions about Shandro could be asked.

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