Following up on Trevor Scott Howell's piece at the Weekly Albertan on the new Green Party Executive's push to change the party name to the 'Alberta Progress Party,' Trish Audette posted a media release from Green Deputy Leader Edwin Erickson. In the 2008 provincial election, Erickson placed second with 19% of the vote in Drayton Valley-Calmar, but now he's leaving the Greens to help form the Alberta Progress Party.
Here's the release:
Alberta Green Party Deputy Leader Leaves to Start New Party
BUCK LAKE, AB- February 25, 2009 – “Over the strong objections from the newly elected leader Joe Anglin and party executive, I have tendered my resignation as deputy leader from the Green Party of Alberta and withdrew my membership in the Alberta Greens today.”
“I have very high regard for Joe Anglin and the new executive. This group has both the capacity and the ambition to really get things done, and that is something that has certainly been lacking in the past. In fact, I would have resigned last year, if it hadn’t been for Anglin’s insistent encouragement that I stay on and help “fix the Green party”. Even after the ridiculous outcome of the September 27 AGM, I stayed on, hoping to help clean up old baggage and move forward.”
“But, the situation only seems to get worse. Aside from continued attempts by members of the old guard to undermine the new leadership, it has now come to my attention that important financial information from last year has been either withheld or is not made available, making it impossible for the new executive to file a year-end report. To make matters even worse, and I state this without prejudice, it looks as though certain members of the former party executive may have self-approved illegal loans to the Party, in what can only be viewed as an attempt to profit from tax-deductible donations intended for the party.”
“It is now totally obvious to me that there is no political future with the Alberta Greens – I think it’s a ship that’s about to capsize. I admire the efforts of Anglin and the new executive to patch things up, but I’ve had enough. ”
“I have argued since last spring that this province needs a strong centrist party that can truly be an effective and electable political force, one that is prepared to serve the interest of Albertans. I don’t believe we’ve had a government in this province that gave a damn about Albertans since the early days of Peter Lougheed. I’m leaving the Alberta Greens in order to lead the effort to register a new political party called the Alberta Progress Party. I am now in the process of organizing the collection of signatures as required by Elections Alberta and in the recruitment of new members. I intend to do everything in my power to bring members from various political backgrounds into the fold, people who truly want to make a positive political change in this province."-30-