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Thursday, August 30, 2007

updated candidates list.

The 2007 municipal election candidates list and 2007/2008 Alberta provincial election candidates list have both been recently updated...

(Also, thanks to Emerson Mayers, running for the PC nomination in Edmonton-Manning, for the bizarre email...)

Wednesday, August 29, 2007


Calgary-Mountain View Alberta Liberal MLA David Swann has some interesting thoughts on today's Peace River nuclear power plant announcement.

Now, being skeptical about nuclear power is one thing (and another issue that I plan to elaborate further in a future post), but the secrecy surrounding who the plant's largest customer will be is another bizarre story:

Bold plans to bring nuclear power to northern Alberta were unveiled Tuesday, but just exactly who'll be using most of the megawatts remained a mystery even to many in the oilpatch.

It's assumed that Energy Alberta Corp.'s proposed $6.2-billion project to put a Candu twin reactor in the sparsely populated Peace River area in the province's northwestern corner is all about the oilsands, which require an immense amount of energy to squeeze oil from the ground.

The company and its partners said Tuesday that about 70 per cent of the 2,200 megawatts of electricity will be going to "one large, industrial off-taker" but declined to name names.

"At this time we're not going to discuss those arrangements," said Dale Coffin, spokesman for Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd., which is teaming up with Energy Alberta to build Canada's first new nuclear power in nearly 25 years.

retirement row.

In what I expect to be a steady stream over the next few months, long-time Tory backbencher Richard Magnus joined the current as he announced that he won't be seeking a fifth term in office.

That brings the official MLA retirement list to eight:

Progressive Conservative MLAs
Victor Doerksen (Red Deer-South)
Clint Dunford (Lethbridge-West)
Carol Haley (Airdrie-Chestermere)
Denis Herard (Calgary-Egmont)
Rob Lougheed (Strathcona)
Richard Magnus (Calgary-North Hill)

Alberta Liberal MLA
Maurice Tougas (Edmonton-Meadowlark)

New Democrat MLA
Raj Pannu (Edmonton-Strathcona)

On the Tory retirements, comments are abound:

"A lot of MLAs see the writing on the wall that people are not happy with the party and the way it's run," says Jim Stevenson, who chaired Alberta Renewal, founded during last fall's leadership race in an effort to reconnect the party with its grassroots.

"There's so many things that need to be changed to bring some democracy back into the party and I don't see that happening."


David Taras, a political analyst at the University of Calgary, agrees a number of factors affect the decision whether to run again, but says Stelmach has to wear some of the responsibility.

"There are a lot of factors at work here and some are not the kind of factors the premier likes to talk about," he said. "Klein had enormous coat tails. With those coat tails gone, and the argument that Stelmach has very short coat tails, or none at all, could be a drag on some of these candidates.

"If you do the basic math, some of them could be in tough re-election battles and some could lose."

rick bell on 'kooky craig.'

Calgary Sun columnist Rick Bell offers his thoughts on Progressive Conservative nomination candidate 'Kooky' Craig Chandler's recent comments that if new Albertans: "wish to live here, you must adapt to our rules and our voting patterns, or leave. Conservatism is our culture. Do not destroy what we have created."

UPDATE: CTV Calgary and the Globe and Mail have both run stories on Mr. Chandler's commments.

Ed Stelmach wouldn't refute Chandler's comments, but would only say that: “This province has welcomed newcomers and we will continue to welcome newcomers.”

Here is the YouTube video (linked from Glen):

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

craig chandler continued.

Craig Chandler officially announced his intentions to run for the Progressive Conservative nomination in Calgary-Egmont as five-term Tory MLA Denis Herard announced his retirement today.

Chandler recently wrote the bizarre and ridiculous webboard statement that if new Albertans "wish to live here, you must adapt to our rules and our voting patterns, or leave. Conservatism is our culture. Do not destroy what we have created.

Chandler's positions are somewhat confusing after you notice some pretty big contradictions between his campaign website and a media release sent out by his campaign today:

Media Release: "Some in our party have become complacent and think we have the natural right to govern because we are conservatives."

Website: "Craig Chandler is seeking the riding nomination for the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party. We all know that whoever wins the nomination will surely become your next MLA."

Yep, complacent.

I wonder if Ed Stelmach is starting to regret these best wishes...

Here is Chandler's media release as received by email (how many spelling errors can you spot?):


(Calgary) Craig Chandler, Executive Director of the Progressive Group for Independent Business (PGIB) and a well known name in conservative political circles is seeking to become the MLA for the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party in Calgary Egmont. Craig Chandler has taken a leave of abscence from the the Progressive Group for Independent Business (PGIB)

"I feel that we need a strong Alberta a government where we put Alberta first. Some in our party have become complacent and think we have the natural right to govern because we are conservatives. I feel we need to get back to looking at the whites of people eyes on their doorsteps and find out first hand what we are doing well and where we need to improve. I will show up at the door of my constituents at least once a year to find out first hand their concerns. I will be an effective and articulate voice for Calgary Egmont and Calgary as a whole" said Craig Chandler.

The Craig Chandler campaign has been campaigning for over 3 months and has submited a very substantial amount of memberships to the party. Several communities have already been doorknocked and the campaign is working full time with volunteer and paid staff. Craig Chandler has also managed to unite many on the conservative right behind him. Link Byfield of the Wildrose Party has endorsed Craig Chandler. David Crutcher who received 1,657 votes for the Alberta Alliance in Calgary Egmont has joined the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party and is now serving as their President in Calgary Egmont.

"We are taking nothing for granted. We are working very hard and know that it takes a substantial amount of memberships and money to win the nomination. We will always be campaigning like we are 30 votes behind" said Harley Shouldice, Campaign Manager / Whip for the Craig Chandler Campaign.

- 30 -

For More Information contact Harley Shouldice or Craig Chandler at 203-3456
It also looks like Chandler's PGIB group is going to start hijacking Progressive Conservative nomination meeting through

poll change.

Old poll...

Who will be elected as the MP for Edmonton Strathcona in the next Federal Election?
Linda Duncan, NDP - 221 votes (69%)
Rahim Jaffer, Conservative - 57 votes (18%)
Claudette Roy, Liberal - 41 votes (13%)
319 votes total
(They look like the 2006 results from my old polling districtin Garneau)

New poll...
Who will be the next leader of the Alberta Progressive Conservative Party?
Craig Chandler
Ray Danyluk
Jim Dinning
Dave Hancock
Ted Morton
Mark Norris
Lyle Oberg
Tom Olsen
Vote early and vote often (and you don't have to adapt to our rules and our voting patterns in this poll).

Monday, August 27, 2007

if you move to alberta – adapt or leave: craig chandler.

Alberta PC nomination candidate Craig Chandler has eloquently declared his feelings towards new Albertans who choose to exercise their constitutional right to vote for a political party other than the 36-year old ruling Progressive Conservative Party of Ed Stelmach.

I wonder which point in Ed Stelmach’s five-priority plan Chander is promoting when he wrote this:

To those of you who have come to our great land from out of province, you need to remember that you came here to our home and we vote conservative. You came here to enjoy our economy, our natural beauty and more. This is our home and if you wish to live here, you must adapt to our rules and our voting patterns, or leave. Conservatism is our culture. Do not destroy what we have created.

Considering that Stelmach's Tories haven't been doing too well in Calgary lately, I wonder how excited Ed Stelmach will be with Craig Chandler carring the PC banner in Calgary Egmont?

I know I'm looking forward to the daily entertainment.

danyluk flees alberta.

As the affordable housing crisis rages across Alberta, Tory Minister Ray Danyluk is traveling to New York to "investigate innovative programs to address homelessness and housing."

Now I wouldn't have had a problem with Danyluk traveling to New York had he not appointed an Affordable Housing Task Force to study and hold hearings on this issue across Alberta (which they did quite sucessfully).

The Affordable Housing Task Force, which delivered its final report to Danyluk in March 2007, contains many innovative ideas that have since been largely ignored by the Stelmach Tories.

And even if the Tories didn't like the Task Force's Final Report, there's no shortage of innovative ideas floating around Alberta to look at.

monday mornings...

Just some quick links for your Monday morning reading...

- Sheila Pratt had an interesting article on Alberta Liberal Leader Kevin Taft this weekend.

- It looks like Ken Chapman had the scoop on Red Deer - South Tory MLA Victor Doerksen's retirement.

- I'm not sure how many people saw Stephane Dion's interview on Sunday's CTV Question Period, but it seriously had to be one of the worst media interviews that I've seen any politician do. Dion is leaving a lot to be desired, but obviously has time to work on his communication skills before the next federal election.

- It's an ALL ALBERTA western showdown in Calgary Grit's 'Best Premier' competition. Peter Lougheed v. Ernest Manning.

Friday, August 24, 2007

mandel rising.

Edmonton Mayor Stephen Mandel has launched his re-election campaign with a new website and billboard campaign...

In 2004, Mandel was first elected after coming from behind in a three-way race between then-Mayor Bill Smith and former City Councillor Robert Noce. Previous to being elected Mayor, Mandel served as a Councillor for Ward 1 from 2001 to 2004.

Here are the 2004 results:

Stephen Mandel - 85,887
Bill Smith - 68,767
Robert Noce - 52,640
Tilo Paravalos - 921
Dieter Peske - 905
Dave Dowling - 858
Thomas "Buffalo Terminator" Tomilson - 768
Jean-Paul Noujaim - 390

i support affordable student housing.

The Graduate Students' Association at the University of Alberta has taken the initiative and started a public campaign - I Support Affordable Student Housing - calling for solutions to solve the student end of the affordable housing crisis in Edmonton.

The campaign website also provides a list of options for students still looking for affordable housing with September fast approaching.

friday morning roundup.

- Longtime Tory MLA Clint Dunford has officially announced that he won't be seeking re-election in Lethbridge West. Dunford, a former Klein Minister, has held the hotly contested seat since 1993.

- The controversy surrounding the awarding of a post-election contract to defeated Edmonton Meadowlark Tory MLA Bob Maskell continues with charges of favoritism and overbilling being launched at the Tories.

- The AEUB scandal continues as investigators south of the border in the State of Montana are shocked about the public board's spying activities:

A scandal that has plagued Alberta's energy regulator has become an international incident, with the Montana government wanting to know whether its citizens were spied on by an arms-length agency of the Alberta government.

Ken Toole of Montana's Public Service Commission said Wednesday that while he doesn't have full information on the issue, what he has heard about the Alberta Energy and Utilities Board is troubling.

"It is of great concern to me if any citizen group is being monitored by government agencies because they oppose a power line or a power plant or oil well or —whatever," he said.

"I believe in civil liberties, and I don't think it's appropriate that government agencies monitor citizens who are protesting something they don't like, as long as they're lawful."

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

can't buy me love.

Yesterday: Polls released showing Ed Stelmach's Tories dropping 22-percent in support over the past 7 months from 54% in January to 32% in August. A stunningly large 36% of Albertans polled fell into the 'undecided' pool.

Today: Stelmach's Tories announce $350 million in government building upgrades. Can you smell a desperate reaction?

To the 22-point plunge, Stelmach's spokesperson, the lovey Tom Olsen responded...

The reason the dramatic plunge is "believable," according to Olsen, is that "hundreds of thousands of new Albertans don't know the history of Progressive Conservative governments in this province and are spending their time assessing what they see."
Well, I'm not going to spend much time pointing out the hilariousness of Tom Olsen's response. I'll defer to Dan for that.

(Also, click here to see CTV's news report on the story - click on "Kirk Heuser reports")

and the floodgates burst open.

I've updated the Edmonton Municipal Election candidates list based on updated information from this website.

Newly listed candidates include:

- Peter Lefaivre for Mayor
- Kyle Balombin in Ward 3
- Chris Martin in Ward 3
- Judith (Jodi) Flatt in Ward 4
- Brian Wissink in Ward 4
- Brent Michalyk in Ward 5
- Lori Jeffery-Heaney in Ward 6
- Joani Linder in Ward 6
- Thomas Dennis Vasquez in Ward 6

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

albertans going shopping.

A poll released today by Cameron Strategy Group shows Ed Stelmach’s Tories dropping 22 points in the past 7 months to 32% support across Alberta (down from 54% in January 2007).

The poll also shows Stelmach’s Calgary approval ratings dropping from 52% in January to 38% in August (his disapproval rating in Calgary is 40%). Stelmach has also dropped from a January high of 58% to an August 45% in Edmonton, and a 59% to 50% drop in the other regions of Alberta (his disapproval ratings in Edmonton and other Alberta regions are 39% and 26%).

But what is most interesting is the dramatic increase of undecided voters from 18% to 36% in 7 months (with 39% of Calgarians and 36% of Edmontonians falling in the unsure or won't vote category). From the report:

“The increase in undecided voters in the past 3 months in Alberta is unprecedented. A huge swath of the Alberta electorate is now without a firm voting intention, which means that dramatic changes in the electoral landscape are possible. The key question remains to be answered in the next 6 months is who will be successful in luring these newly undecided voters: the PC’s, who need to bring them back to the fold, or the Liberals, who have not yet shown signs of growth in voter support.”
Here are the regional breakdowns:

Provincial Voting Intentions (January support in brackets)

PC – 32% (54%)
Liberal – 16% (16%)
NDP – 11% (9%)
Alliance – 5% (3%)
Unsure/Won’t vote – 36% (18%)

PC – 30% (59%)
Liberal – 17% (14%)
NDP – 8% (8%)
Alliance – 5% (2%)
Unsure/Won’t vote – 39% (16%)


PC – 27% (50%)
Liberal – 17% (16%)
NDP – 16% (12%)
Alliance – 5% (2%)
Unsure/Won’t vote – 36% (19%)

Other Alberta
PC – 41% (52%)
Liberal – 13% (18%)
NDP – 7% (6%)
Alliance – 7% (4%)
Unsure/Won’t vote – 31% (20%)
Another poll released by Cameron Strategy Group asked the question “Is the Stelmach Government Leading Alberta in the right direction?”

26% responded the 'right' direction, 30% responded the 'wrong' direction, and 44% were 'unsure.' When you compare these numbers to January 2007 when 54% responded ‘right,’ 10% responded ‘wrong,’ and 36% responded ‘undecided’ you can see a pretty substantial shift.

Though these numbers clearly don't benifit any specific political party, the growing undecided pool of voters leaking from the Tory support hints that a fall 2007 election may start to look more likely (before the S.S. Stelmach sinks any further).

It also means that the Liberals and Tories are going to have to put in extra effort to woo the growing undecided vote in the run up to the next election.

Monday, August 20, 2007

it's cozy in there.

If you haven't already, read Sheila Pratt's column from Sunday's Edmonton Journal. It's a great article that takes Ed Stelmach to task for hiring Suncor VP Heather Kennedy as an assistant deputy minister in the Tory Governments oilsands development secretariat. Pratt hits it right on the mark:

"This stinks so badly it makes the toxic lakes on the oilsands mines smell like garden ponds. The worst is that the government doesn't seem to get the potential conflicts staring it in the face.

Something about the fox and the henhouse quickly comes to mind when the job of coming up with public policy to best manage growth around the oilsands is handed over to a current oilpatch executive, even temporarily.

Would you hire agriculture biotech giant Monsanto, purveyor of GM seeds, to run the agriculture department's crop improvement program? Or hire Greenpeace to run the environment department? No, the captains of industry and active lobbyists have their own agendas and it's not always the public agenda.


The treasury department did consult the ethics commissioner about Kennedy's appointment, which is a signal it had a few qualms. Too bad Alberta's ethics report is off limits to the public -- even though it involved a public servant.

Maybe Stelmach doesn't understand the mood in post-Klein Alberta.

People voted for him -- and against Jim Dinning -- partly because they were unhappy about the cosy relationship between business and government, because they thought the oilpatch had too much influence and they wanted a change.

Well, now they've got the oilpatch in the senior civil service.

This controversy was totally unnecessary if the government had thought for one moment about it.

There's no lack of smart people in this province to do the jobs. But there's shortage of good political judgement in Stelmach's cabinet.
Kennedy's appointment comes on the heels of another business cozy controversy in Stelmach's Fort Saskatchewan-Vegreville riding. The Fort Saskatchewan Chamber of Commerce attempted to organize a $300 per person fundraiser where half the funds would go to Stelmach's Constituency Association. The breaks were put on the fundraiser only after a frontpage story and editorial in the Sturgeon Creek Post called on the Chamber to halt its partisan hackery. Dave Truscott is the editor of the Sturgeon Creek Post:
"...there is a time and place for political support, and the Chamber of Commerce is not that place. As a long time member and support of the Chamber I must protest..."

" support a whole party or a candidate would be a mistake even if it were not against the bylaws. Governments and candidates come and go. The Chamber of Commerce represents something more enduring. It must be prepared to deal with whoever is in office."

"I have to add that there is also something very wrong with paying so high a fee to get the ear of our premier. This smacks very much of bribery..."
Chamber of Commerce by-laws are supposed to assure that all Chambers are apolitical, non-partisan, and are not to support any political candidates.

It looks like Ed's making Jim happy.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

elect me, please.

One more candidate has been added to the 2007 Edmonton Municipal Election Candidates List:

- Jabin Caouette in Ward 2

edmonton in august.

Two notes for a Sunday night...

- The 26th Annual Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival began last week. I was there for the opening ceremonies and I'm looking forward to checking out some shows over the next week. Two shows I'm planning to check out are Hooked and The Diary Project.

- The revitalization of 118th Avenue (aka Alberta Avenue) is picking up steam through the hard work of the volunteers from Arts on the Ave and The Carrot Community Arts Coffeehouse. A good friend of mine was involved in helping The Carrot and I'm hoping to get there at somepoint before the end of summer.

Friday, August 17, 2007

melchin poll continued...

The hilarious saga of Greg Melchin's website poll continues as the votes continue to rise this morning in a dramatic seesaw of shifts between 'excellent' and 'below average.' As of 12:11PM today there have been over 1200 more votes than yesterday morning (I'm betting it's only 2 or 3 people actually voting)...

Survey of the Month
How would you rate Premier Stelmach's first session?

Excellent 50.0%

Below Average 37.8%
Satisfactory 10.5%
Average 1.6%
Total Votes: 1395

UPDATE: 1:38PM... 1250 votes later...
Survey of the Month
How would you rate Premier Stelmach's first session?

Excellent 44.9%

Below Average 35.8%
Satisfactory 18.4%
Average 0.9%
Total Votes: 2645

Thursday, August 16, 2007

the beauty of online polls.

The downside of putting up online polls on your website is that you don't always get the response you'd like. Take this poll from Calgary North West PC MLA Greg Melchin's website...

Survey of the Month
How would you rate Premier Stelmach's first session?

Below Average 87.2%
Average 8.1%
Satisfactory 3.5%
Excellent 1.2%
Total Votes: 86

Online polls. Easy to have fun with...

UPDATE! It's 3:40PM and it looks like Greg Melchin's Constituency Staff have been keeping themselves busy over the past couple hours...

Survey of the Month
How would you rate Premier Stelmach's first session?

Excellent - 62.7%
Satisfactory - 17.4%
Below Average - 16.2%
Average - 3.7%
Total Votes: 628

And I'm still trying to figure out what the difference is between 'Satisfactory' and 'Average.'

(Larry Johnsrude also picked up this up on his blog)

ANOTHER UPDATE: It's 7:29PM and it looks like a battle has begun on Greg Melchin's website poll between pro- and anti- Stelmachian forces...
Survey of the Month
How would you rate Premier Stelmach's first session?
Below Average 44.9%

Excellent 41.3%
Satisfactory 11.4%
Average 2.4%
Total Votes: 965
I bet you Greg Melchin's website has never received this much attention...

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

what is ed stelmach really up to?

The results of the latest daveberta poll are out:

When will the next Provincial General Election be called in Alberta?
Fall 2007 - 41% (53 votes)
Winter 2008 - 9% (12 votes)
Spring 2008 - 33% (43 votes)
Summer 2008 - 2% (2 votes)
Fall 2008 - 9% (12 votes)
Winter 2009 - 1% (1 vote)
Spring 2009 - 4% (5 votes)
Summer 2009 - 0% (0 votes)
Fall 2009 - 2% (2 votes)

This leads me to two specific theories that I have heard about when the next provincial election will be held...

Theory One: Spring 2008

Finance Minister Lyle Oberg has already set the date for the 2008 Alberta Budget for February 14, 2008. With Ed Stelmach's Tories having a very hard time gaining traction on the announcements they've made since December 2006, it wouldn't be surprising to see Stelmach attempt to pull a page from the 1997 Election playbook and drop the writ minutes after tabling the budget and run on the budget.

A Spring 2008 election would also give all the parties time to organize over the next five to six months.

Theory Two: Fall/Winter 2007

There are four points that lend support this theory:

a) The Stelmach Tories should be concerned about how much further they could fall in the polls by Spring 2008.

After 36 years of Tory government, Albertans moods and political attitudes are shifting. With the election of Craig Cheffins in the Calgary Elbow by-election in May 2007, Stelmach must be worried about growing support for Kevin Taft's Alberta Liberals in Calgary.

The Tories only need +42 of the 60 seats they already hold to form a majority government – and with there only being half a dozen opposition held ridings likely to be hotly competitive for the Tories it is not unimaginable that they will only mount strong campaigns in these ridings (including already nominated PC candidates in Edmonton Meadowlark, St. Albert, and Cardston-Taber-Warner).

The Tories may also need to concentrate on gaining seats in Edmonton and area in order to offset expected losses to the Alberta Liberals in Calgary.

b) Stelmach has lined up a number of high profile speaking engagements across Alberta in September and October (Premier's Dinners in Grande Prairie, Lethbridge, Medicine Hat, Red Deer, and Fort McMurray along with PC policy conferences in Edmonton and Calgary) to raise his profile.

c) A pre-campaign memo sent by the Tories to their constituency associations, MLA's, and members was widely distributed and made very public – which could be an attempt to throw off the opposition parties in their election timeline planning. The Stelmach Tories have also appointed a Campaign Manager (Randy Dawson) and Camapign Co-Chairs (Doug Goss and Douglas Black).

d) The Tory candidate nomination timeline requires all PC-incumbent ridings to have candidates nominated by October 31, 2007 and non-PC-incumbent ridings to have candidates nominated by November 30, 2007. These are deadlines, so it is possible that the Tories could have all their candidates nominated by the end of October, leaving enough time to avoid a Christmas election and call an election similar to 2004 (immediately following the October municipal elections).

new poll.

On the sidebar for your voting pleasure.

This week's question:

Who will be elected as the MP for Edmonton Strathcona in the next Federal Election?

Linda Duncan, NDP
Rahim Jaffer, Conservative
Claudette Roy, Liberal

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

two out of six.

Calgary Mountain View MLA David Swann released two YouTube videos from his July 19 press conference in response to the Stelmach Tories Measuring Up report.

The government’s Measuring Up report indicated that only two out of Alberta’s six major riverways had “excellent” or “good” water quality. This is in decline from other years, and is of serious concern especially considering the diminishing quantity of water across the province.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

folk fest blog back.

Just like years past, the Folk Fest Blog is back up and running for this weekend's Edmonton Folk Music Festival.

not a hero.

Thanks to Larry Johnsrude for emailing me a link to this earlier this week...

Not that I totally agree with the video, but it is cleverly made and reflects a setiment that I'm hearing quite a bit these days from my Tory voting friends (particularily those of the Jim Dinning and Ted Morton variety). I also think that comparing Ed Stelmach to Stephane Dion is an interesting approach...

(I also don't quite understand the comparison to Kermit the Frog)

PS: I am not davefromalberta. I am daveberta.

random facts.

A while back, Derek Raymaker tagged me for 8 random facts. So, because I'm original (or I could only think of 6, here are five random facts about myself...):

- I'm a huge Johnny Cash fan. I have 11 Johnny Cash CD's and saw Walk the Line in theatres 3 or 4 times (I own the DVD).

- I was nominated the Queen's Golden Jubilee Medal by Cliff Chadderton Chair of the National Council or Veteran Associations of Canada (and I was awarded the medal…)

- I just returned from spending 6 weeks in Quebec.

- I was once almost kicked out the Alberta Legislature for being part of an impromptu media scrum in front of the Premier's Office on the fourth floor (Ralph Klein actually walked by during the scrum). Apparently you're not allowed to do that.

- I've visited the Big Valley Creation Science Museum...

- I was once in Amersterdam's Schiphol Airport during a bomb threat.

And because it's only fair, I'll have to tag Dan, Blake, and Ken.

Friday, August 10, 2007

an unruly bunch.

Ed Stelmach leaves the province for only a couple of days, and already the kids are at each others throats...

Tory MLA slams Ted Morton

Tory MLA Denis Ducharme is slamming Sustainable Resource Minister Ted Morton’s decision to allow seismic tests by a Calgary-based company on Marie Lake, one of Alberta’s remaining pristine bodies of water.

He’s also “very disappointed” that he found out about the decision through the media.

“I found that his lack of professional courtesy to me was unacceptable,” Ducharme, of the Bonnyville-Cold Lake constituency, told Sun Media. “I’m certainly going to be having a discussion with the premier regarding this decision.”

Ducharme suggested Morton’s hands may be tied by the province’s oil development policy.

“Maybe there are some changes that have to be done,” he said. “Unfortunately, Mr. Morton did not show leadership.”

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

daveberta in outremont.

Last weekend, I spent the last days of my six weeks in la belle provence of Québec on the island of Montreal.

Along with going to check out the Tamtams, I also took a walk through the streets of Outremont, where a federal by-election happens to be occuring.

Being a good political blogger, I tried to play the game of "spot the campaign sign." Unfortunately, I was only able to spot two candidate's campaign signs on the streets of Outremont...

NDP candidate Thomas Mulcair

Bloc Quebecois candidate Jean-Paul Gilson

I found it quite interesting that neither Federal Liberal candidate Jocelyn Coulon or Conservative candidate Gilles Duguay had signage posted for their candidacy, especially since the riding was vacated by former Liberal MP Jean LaPierre (then again...). The 2006 election saw Jean LaPierre gain 35% of the vote compared to 28% for Bloc Quebecois candidate Jacques Leonard, 17% for NDP candidate Leo-Paul Lauzon, and 12% for Conservative candidate Daniel Fournier. With this kind of vote split in a General Election, it should be interesting to see how voters in Outremont will vote in the September 17, 2007 by-election.

Also, having spent the past 5 weeks in the Saguenay-Lac-St. Jean region of Quebec, I think we could see some interesting results from the Roberval–Lac-St-Jean by-election to replace former Bloc MP Michel Gauthier. More on this in another post.

(and yes, I can see that the Thomas Mulcair sign is sideways)

i'm back... Alberta.

And two new candidates have been added to the 2007 Edmonton Municipal Election candidates list: Ward 1 candidate Andrew Knack and Ward 6 candidate Chuck McKenna.

I will try to keep this list as updated as possible, so if you have knowledge of candidates that should be added feel free to post them here or email me at