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Thursday, June 28, 2007

top ten.

I'm going to be taking a break from the world of blogging for the month of July, but I will be back in August.

Until then, I will leave you with the Ed Stelmach Top Ten List...

10. The $5,000 Fundraiser

9. Ed Stelmach's first cabinet (90% male, 90% rural, 90% rookie)

8. Ed Stelmach's second cabinet (89% male, 89% rural, 89% rookie).

7. The Stelmach-Oberg 2007 Budget.

6. Ed Stelmach agreeing with Calgary Elbow PC candidate Brian Heninger that he should be choked (Heninger was defeated by Alberta Liberal Craig Cheffins. Kevin Taft's Alberta Liberals won Calgary Elbow after 36 years as a Tory stronghold).

5. Ed Stelmach picking a fight with Calgary Mayor Dave Bronconnier over municipal funding.

4. Ed Stelmach letting Education Minister Ron Liepert pick a fight with the Alberta Teachers' Association over the unfunded pension liability during a bargaining year.

3. Ed Stelmach defending the AEUB for hiring four private investegators to spy on Albertans and their lawyers.

2. Ed Stelmach doing nearly nothing to address Alberta's growing affordable housing crisis.

1. Ed Stelmach blaming market forces for his 19 point drop in support in Calgary.

There you have it folks, see you in August!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

alberta: political clearing house.

The newest of the new in the never halting rotating door of right-wing parties is entering stage right: The Wildrose Party.

If Ken's list is correct, it is certainly an interesting group. Senator-in-waiting Lynk Byfeild, former Alberta Alliance candidates Elanor Maroes and Marilyn Burns, and Gordon Stamp.

commissioner to investigate aeub.

As Ed Stelmach and Mel Knight continue to defend the AEUB for its hiring of four private investagators to spy on Albertans and their lawyers in Rimbey, Information and Privacy Commissioner Frank Work has opened an investigation into the AEUB scandal.

Meanwhile, the angry letters continue to roll into the newspapers.

shuffling the political deck.

From Andrew Cohen in today's Ottawa Citizen:

If Saskatchewan is poised for change, so is Alberta, where the Conservatives have been in office since 1971. The loss of Ralph Klein's seat -- which the Conservatives held for years -- in a recent byelection in Calgary may well be the first knock on the door of their undoing.

Led by the intelligent Kevin Taft, the Liberals offer a government-in-waiting. Mr. Taft's provocative new book, Democracy Derailed, is a searing indictment of a government that he calls unaccountable and unimaginative in a province coping with explosive growth.

Alberta, like Saskatchewan, is on the cusp of change.

Monday, June 25, 2007

take two.

In reaction to the Alberta Liberal victory in the June 12 Calgary Elbow by-election, Ed Stelmach has added three Associate Ministers to his cabinet. Here are my thoughts on the move:

- A cabinet shuffle this early is a very odd move for a Premier that has yet to receive a mandate from the electorate.

- Appointing Gene Zwozdesky (Edmonton Mill Creek) puts two of three Edmonton Tory MLAs at the cabinet table (does Zwozdesky get a ‘half-seat?’). Zwozdesky’s responsibilities surround “capital planning,” something that suffered greatly over the past decade under the Tories. This may also give Zwozdesky a boost if he decides to run for re-election next Spring (Zwozdesky was re-elected by 781 votes in 2004).

In a related position, Yvonne Fritz (Calgary Cross) becomes Associate Minister of Affordable Housing and Urban Development. I’m not convinced that these two new Associate Minister appointments will actually solve the problems facing Albertans (ie: municipal funding, infrastructure, affordable housing) as what is needed is action and policy change – not the creation of new political jobs with hefty pay increases.

- In an odd move, Cindy Ady (Calgary Shaw) becomes Associate Minister of Tourism Promotion (with responsibility for Alberta’s participation in the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver). I’m not quite sure why Alberta needs an Associate Minister of Olympics, but Hector Goudreau needs all the help he can get. I wonder how Mark Norris is feeling this week...

- All three newly appointed Associate Ministers supported Jim Dinning in the PC Leadership selection.

- Both Fritz and Zwozdesky were Ministers in Ralph Klein’s cabinets. All three supported Jim Dinning in the 2006 PC Leadership selection.

- These appointments raise serious concerns about the effectiveness of the Cabinet Policy Committees created after Stelmach became Premier.

- Appointing Justice Minister Ron Stevens as Deputy Premier is substantial only in a superficial manner. Considering that no one noticed when no Deputy Premier was appointed in December, it’s hard to say that this is anything more than bestowing another title. That said, Stelmach would be smart to move closer to veteran Ministers like Stevens and Dave Hancock - as surrounding himself with rookie rural Ministers Ray Danyluk, Lloyd Snelgrove, and Luke Ouellette hasn’t done him much good.

This all occurred the day before the release of a new Ipsos poll released on Saturday that shows party support sitting near 2004 levels (the more things change…).

where are the rolling heads?

As Ed Stelmach continues to defend the AEUB, Tory Minister Mel Knight is refusing to discipline anyone in the AEUB for hiring four private investigators to spy on a group of Alberta farmers and their lawyers.

"They discussed in hindsight that some of the things could have been handled differently and will be using this as a learning opportunity for the future. There will be no disciplinary measures at this time,” Knight's spokesman Jason Chance said.
So, a provincially appointed tax-payer funded public body hired four private investigators to spy on ordinary Albertans and it's a "learning experience?"

There are no repercussions?

No heads are going to roll?

No "review" of security policies?
"There are some very obvious security threats to oil and gas production and we shouldn't discount that, but that is a totally different matter from public engagement in hearings," said Lois Harder, a specialist in Canadian politics. "The effort to keep insisting this is a security issue is a ruse.”

"It's trumped up."

Democracy in Alberta just took another shot, Harder said.

"It's very clear that if there is a threat of violence you call the police, not a private investigator who has no power to stop a threat of violence," Harder said.
This would have been a perfect opportunity for Ed Stelmach to step up and lead by saying that this type of behavior is unacceptable. Instead, he towed the AEUB line. Albertans should be furious.

(Sheila Pratt also has some intersting thoughts on this issue)

Sunday, June 24, 2007

not a silent absence.

For those of you wondering about my absence in the wake of this and this, don't despair. I'll be posting something soon. Busy with real life today.

In the meantime, keep on voting in the poll on the sidebar. 145 votes so far...

Thursday, June 21, 2007

aeub hired p.i. to spy on albertans.

The Alberta Energy and Utilities Board hired a private investegator to spy on Albertans. Yes. A spy.

To quote Paula Simons:

Activists also allege that one of the EUB's agents, Don MacDonald, infiltrated the Alberta Environmental Network by posing as a concerned environmentalist.

Under that guise, they claim, MacDonald took part in conference calls in which the landowners and their lawyers discussed legal strategy.

For the record, the EUB denies hiring MacDonald to spy on the Alberta Environmental Network, suggesting MacDonald was acting for some other, unnamed client. (And for the record again, AltaLink insists it did not hire any PIs, including MacDonald.)

You know what? In a free and democratic society, the state does not normally hire private detectives to spy on citizens. If the EUB was sincerely worried about threats of violence, it could have called independent officers from the RCMP to investigate -- officers who wouldn't have been in the pay of the EUB, officers who would have had to worry about things like search warrants and probable cause and the Charter of Rights.

That's what makes the EUB's actions so disturbing. The board tried to do an end-run around civil liberties by contracting out surveillance work to a private company. For a quasi-judicial body to behave in the way that's alleged, in the midst of a hearing, is reprehensible.
I'm speechless on this one. Someone in the AUEB had a case of very very poor judgement on this one. For a Public Board to hire a PI to spy on a group of ordinary Albertans is completely unaccetable.

What is even more confusing is Ed Stelmach's poor judgment in defending the AEUB's spying tactics. Honest Ed, eh?

(*Cough* Spelling errors corrected - thanks, Bee)

and it's only thursday.

What a week...

- Tory Education Minister Ron Liepert claims poverty. Finance Minister Lyle Oberg announces an $8.5 Billion surplus. For some reason, Liepert's argument sounds more ludicrous today than it did yesterday...

- The Edmonton Journal Editorial Board rebutted Ed Stelmach in today's editorial:

Stephen Mandel is right and Ed Stelmach is wrong. Edmontonians don't need a plebiscite on new taxation powers. They need politicians with the courage to make decisions on this and other questions, to explain and defend those decisions to a skeptical public, and to be held responsible for them at election time.

In short, they need politicians who are more willing to do the difficult parts of the job for which they are paid.

In Stelmach's case, one is tempted to note that a politician who has yet to subject his own premiership to a popular vote has a lot of nerve lecturing the mayor of Edmonton on the wisdom of seeking popular endorsement for his tax ideas.
- The House of Commons sheds a layer: Myron Thompson, Bill Graham, Michel Gauthier, Jean Lapierre, Jim Peterson and is about to make an unfortunate addition.

- Ted Morton wants to raise the drinking age from 18 to 19 years-old to cut down on crime and violence. I'd love to see Ted Morton's data that shows it's the 18 years-olds causing all the trouble, and not the rig pigs in town for a weekend romp.

- And finally, it wouldn't be an election in Alberta without a crazy wingnut: enter Bill Whatcott.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

mayor off the mark.

Now, I like Stephen Mandel, but what? fining panhandlers?

Mandel suggested one model for the city to examine is the bylaw in Saskatoon, where coercive begging or putting the touch on anyone in a stopped vehicle or within 10 metres of a bus stop, bank or ATM can lead to fines of up to $10,000 for repeat offenders.
Come on, Mr. Mayor. I expected better.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

new poll.

I've added a new poll to the sidebar. Feel free to vote!

nom season.

It's that season again! Here's a rundown on some nomination news for your reading pleasure…

With longtime PC MLA Denis Herard likely retiring at the next election, PGIB (not to be confused with POGOB) Director Craig Chandler is running for the Tory nomination in Calgary-Egmont. No word if any other Tories are challenging Chandler in Egmont.

It's expected that up to 8-10 Calgary PC MLAs may retire at the next election. The list of suspected retirees includes Richard Magnus (Calgary North Hill), Hung Pham (Calgary Montrose), Moe Amery (Calgary East), Heather Forsyth (Calgary Fish Creek), Yvonne Fritz (Calgary Cross), and Shiraz Shariff (Calgary McCall) – most of who were elected in 1993. It will be interesting to see what type of candidates will line up to run for the Tories now that their party leader wears very short coattails in Calgary - which could result in some very competitive races in that city.

The Liberals have (or will soon have) nominated a number of candidates in Calgary, including Kent Hehr (Calgary Buffalo), Carole Oliver (Calgary Fort), Bill Kurtze (Calgary Hays), and Avalon Roberts (Calgary Glenmore). All current Alberta Liberal MLAs are candidates in the next election.

In Calgary West, prominent Calgary lawyer Virginia May will take on Tory Education Minister Ron Liepert as the Liberal candidate. May led the 2001 defamation lawsuit against former Treasurer Stockwell Day. Calgary West has represented by former Tory Premier Peter Lougheed (1967-1986), PC Elaine McCoy (1986-1993), Liberal Danny Dalla-Longa (1993-1997), PC Karen Kryczka (1997-2004), and Ron Liepert (2004-Present).

Calgary Fort also looks like its setting up to be an interesting race with the Liberals and NDP nominating their candidates early. The Liberals have nominated former CBE Trustee Carole Oliver and the New Democrats have nominated Parkland Institute Outreach Coordinator Julie Hrdlicka. Julie Hrdlicka will be a strong candidate for the New Dems in Calgary, but with 3% support in the recent Calgary Elbow by-election, Calgary New Dems may have to rely on personal appeal to make any sort of dent in Calgary. Tory MLA Wayne Cao has represented Calgary Fort since its creation in 1997.

Lethbridge West PC MLA Clint Dunford is also likely to not seek re-election. First elected in 1993, Dunford has been undergoing cancer treatment over the past year. Lethbridge West has seen tight races between the Tories and Liberals since 1993, so this should be one to watch. Lethbridge East is currently held by Liberal MLA and former Alderwoman Bridget Pastoor.

Many-time City Council candidate Ian Crawford and Federal Liberal organizer and former STARS Physician Dr. Raj Sherman are lining up for the PC nomination in Edmonton Meadowlark. Liberal Maurice Tougas defeated Tory Bob Maskell in 2004 by just over 100 votes, so this should be a race to watch. Meadowlark has elected MLAs from both the Tories and Liberals since its creation in 1971 including PC Gerald Amerongen (1971-1986), Liberal Grant Mitchell (1986-1993), Liberal Karen Leibovici (1993-2001), PC Bob Maskell (2001-2004), and Liberal Maurice Tougas (2004-Present).

Catholic School Trustee Janice Sarich is looking for the Tory nod in Edmonton Decore. If Sarich wins the nomination, she will take on Liberal MLA Bill Bonko – a former Public School Trustee. Edmonton Decore and its previous incarnations have gone Liberal since 1989.

In Edmonton McClung, a number of Tories are lining up to take on Liberal MLA Mo Elsalhy. Allison Boychuk and David Xiao are two candidates looking to carry the Tory flag against Elsalhy – who hasn't stopped door knocking since he was first elected in 2004. Edmonton McClung was created in 1993 and elected Liberal MLAs Grant Mitchell (1993-1998), Nancy MacBeth (1998-2001), and Tory MLA Mark Norris (2001-2004).

Edmonton Castle Downs went for three judicial recounts following the last election, so you can bet a media spotlight will be hovering over a second showdown between Tory Thomas Lukaszuk and Liberal Chris Kibermanis.

In St. Albert, the three Tories are seeking the nomination: current St. Albert Mayor Paul Chalifoux, former Alderman Ken Allred, and former Council candidate Frances Badrock. Two of these candidates have Federal connections: Chalifoux ran for the Federal Liberals in 1968 and Allred ran for the Reform Party in 1988 (Allred's nomination ads in the Saint City News make no mention of the PC Party). Chalifoux was narrowly elected as Mayor in 2004 after being defeated by former Mayor Richard Plain in 2001 (Chalifoux served one-term in the Mayor's chair from 1998-2001 and then defeated Plain in 2004 in a return to the Mayor's chair). St. Albert has elected MLA's from three parties in the past 20 years including NDP MLA Bryan Strong (1986-1989), PC Richard Fowler (1989-1993), Liberal Len Bracko (1993-1997), PC Mary O'Neill (1997-2004), and Liberal Jack Flaherty (2004-Present).

In Edmonton Whitemud, former School Trustee Nancy Cavanaugh will be challenging Tory Health Minister Dave Hancock for the Liberals. Hancock is a strong MLA, but past results have shown that Edmonton Whitemud can be a competitive seat (In 1989, Liberal Percy Wickman defeated Tory Premier Don Getty in Edmonton Whitemud). Past MLA's include Liberal Percy Wickman (1989-1993), Liberal Mike Percy (1993-1997), and Tory Dave Hancock (1997-Present).

On the Green side of the block, a number of candidates have nominated including former leader David Parker (Edmonton Centre), Adrian Cole (Edmonton Strathcona), and Sean Mah (Banff-Cochrane). Look for the Greens to solidify their position as third place in Calgary. The New Democrats have also nominated a handful of first-time candidates including Christina Gray (Edmonton Mill Woods), Deron Bilous (Edmonton Centre), and Rachel Notley (Edmonton Strathcona).

Friday, June 15, 2007

2008 alberta provincial election candidates.

Here is a list of nominated provincial party candidates nominated to run in the 2008 Alberta general election on March 3, 2008.

I will try to keep this list as updated as possible as candidate nominations occur, but if you have knowledge of candidates that should be added (or that I've missed) feel free to post in the comment section below or email me at

This list was last updated at 3:32 P.M. on February 22, 2008.

2008 Alberta Provincial General Election Candidates (Margins of victory from previous election or by-election in brackets)

Alberta Liberal - John Burke
Green - David Brandreth
ND - Brian Young
PC- Rob Anderson
Wildrose Alliance - Jeff Willerton

Alberta Liberal - Bill Bonko
Green - Phyllis Penchuk
ND - Peter Opryshko
PC - Jeff Johnson
Wildrose Alliance - Mike Radojcic

Alberta Liberal - Patricia Robertson
Green - Dan Cunin
Independent - Zrinko R. Amerl
ND - Anne Wilson
PC - Janis Tarchuk*

Alberta Liberal - Leslie Penny
Green - Dan Evans
ND - Rod Olstad
PC - Ken Kowalski*
SC - Carl Haugen

Alberta Liberal - Horst Schreiber
Green - Will Munsey
ND - Doris Bannister
PC - Doug Griffiths*

Alberta Liberal - Justin Yassoub
Green - Jennifer Brown
ND - Jason Sloychuk
PC - Eugenia Leskiw

Alberta Liberal - Greg Flanagan
Green - Randy Weeks
ND - Teale Phelps-Bondaroff
PC - Alana DeLong*
Social Credit - Len Skowronski
Wildrose Alliance - Barry Holizki

Alberta Liberal - Kent Hehr
Green - Steven Rickets
ND - Robert Lawrence
PC - Sean Chu
SC - Antoni Grochowski

Alberta Liberal - Rob Reinhold
Green - Susan Stratton
ND - Shelina Hassanali
PC - Yvonne Fritz*
Wildrose Alliance - Gordon Huth

Alberta Liberal - Dave Taylor*
Green - Kim Warnke
ND - Marc Power
PC - Arthur Kent
Wildrose Alliance - Ken Mazeroll

Alberta Liberal - Bill Harvey
Communist - Bonnie Collins
Green - Ross Cameron

ND - Chris Dovey
PC - Moe Amery*
Wildrose Alliance - Mike McCraken

Alberta Liberal - Cathie Williams
Green - Mark McGillvray
Independent - Craig Chandler
ND - Jason Nishiyama
PC - Jonathan Denis
Wildrose Alliance - Barry Chase

Alberta Liberal - Craig Cheffins*
Green - Jonathon Sheffield
Independent - Barry Erskine
ND - Garnet Wilcox
PC - Alison Redford
SC - Trevor Grover
Wildrose Alliance - Dale Nelson

Alberta Liberal - Laura Shutiak
Green - Kerry Tynan Fraser
ND - Eric Leavitt
PC - Heather Forsyth*
Wildrose Alliance - Jamie Buchan

Alberta Liberal - Michael Robinson
Green - Ian Groll
ND - Stephanie Sundburg
PC - Len Webber*
Wildrose Alliance - Kevin Legare

Alberta Liberal - Carole Oliver
Green - Mark Taylor
ND - Julie Hrdlicka
PC - Wayne Cao*
Wildrose Alliance - Travis Chase

Alberta Liberal - Avalon Roberts
Green - Jared McCollum
Independent: David Crutcher
ND - Holly Heffernan
PC - Ron Stevens*
Wildrose Alliance - Arden Bonokoski

Alberta Liberal - Bill Kutze
Green - Keeley Bruce
ND - Tyler Kinch
PC - Art Johnson*
Wildrose Alliance - Devin Cassidy

Alberta Liberal - Lori Czerwinski
Green - Bernie Amell
Independent - Keith Laurie
ND - Clint Marko
PC - Dave Rodney*
Wildrose Alliance - Derrek Jacobson

Alberta Liberal - Tianna Melnyk
Green - Ryan Smith
ND - Daena Diduck
PC - Teresa Woo-Paw
Wildrose Alliance - Rob Gregory

Alberta Liberal - Darshan Kang
Green - Heather Brocklesby
ND - Preet Sihota
PC - Shiraz Shariff*
Wildrose Alliance - Ina Given

Alberta Liberal - Michael Embaie
Green - Fred Clemens
Independent - Ron Leech
ND - Al Brown
PC - Manmeet Bhullar
Wildrose Alliance - Said Abdulbaki

Alberta Liberal - David Swann*
Green - Juliet BurgessND - John Donovan
PC - Leah Lawrence
Wildrose Alliance - Cory Morgan

Alberta Liberal - Pat Murray
Green - Kevin Maloney
ND - John Chan
PC - Kyle Fawcett
SC - Jim Wright
Wildrose Alliance - Jane Morgan

(PC 3268)
Alberta Liberal - Dale D'Silva
Green - George Read
ND - Collin Anderson
PC - Lindsay Blackett
Wildrose Alliance - Chris Jukes

Alberta Liberal - Len Borowski
Green - Nick Burman
ND - Tristan Ridley
PC - Neil Brown*

Alberta Liberal - John Roggeveen
Green - Jennifer Oss-Saunders
ND - Jenn Carlson
PC - Cindy Ady*
Wildrose Alliance - Richard Dur

Alberta Liberal - Harry Chase*
Green - Sean Maw
ND - Tim Stock-Bateman
PC - Jennifer Diakiw
Wildrose Alliance - Brennan Ltyle

Alberta Liberal - Beth Gignac
Green - James Kohut
ND - Chantelle Dubois
PC - Ron Liepert*
Wildrose Alliance - Bob Babcock

Alberta Liberal - Ron Hancock
Green - Billy Turner
ND - Suzanne Sirias
PC - Broyce Jacobs
Wildrose Alliance - Paul Hinman*

Alberta Liberal - Dick Mastel
Green - Bright Pride
ND - Manuel Martinez
PC - Len Mitzel*
Wildrose Alliance - Dan Pierson

Alberta Liberal - Norma Block
Green - Edwin Erickson
ND - Luanne Bannister
PC - Diana McQueen
Wildrose Alliance - Dean Schmale

Alberta Liberal - Tom Dooley
Green - Amanda Bolton
ND - Richard Bough
PC - Jack Hayden*
Wildrose Alliance - Dave France

Alberta Liberal - Bob Woken
ND- Nathan Macklin
PC - Hector Goudreau*
Wildrose Alliance - Dale Leuken

Alberta Liberal - Dawit Issac
Green - Fredrick Pivot
ND - Ray Martin
PC - Tony Vandermeer
SC - Robin Porteous
Wildrose Alliance - Brian Dell

Alberta Liberal - Jim Kane
Green - Mike Brown
ND - Dave Eggen*
PC - Doug Elniski

Alberta Liberal - Chris Kibermanis
Green - Bob Reckhow
ND- Ali Haymour
PC - Thomas Lukaszuk*

Alberta Liberal - Laurie Blakeman*
Alberta Party - Margaret Saunter
Green - David Parker
ND - Deron Bilous
PC - Bill Donahue
Wildrose Alliance - James Iverson

Alberta Liberal - Bill Bonko*
Green - Trey Capenhurst
ND - Sidney Sadik
PC - Janice Sarich

Alberta Liberal - Bharat Agnihotri*
Green - Paul Boos
ND - Marilyn Assheton-Smith
PC - Naresh Bhardwaj
SC - Cheryl Ullah
Wildrose Alliance - Krista Leddy

Alberta Liberal - Bruce Miller*
Green - Peter Johnson
ND - Arlene Chapman
PC - Heather Klimchuk
SC - Walter Schachenhofer
Wildrose Alliance - Elden Van Hauwaert

Alberta Liberal - Hugh MacDonald*
Green - David Zylstra
ND - Sherry McKibben
PC - David Dorward

Alberta Liberal - Brad Smith
Green - Mohamad Maie Mohamad
ND - Brian Mason*
PC - Andrew Beniuk
Wildrose Alliance - Travis Loewen

Alberta Liberal - Sandeep Dhir
Green - Odette Boily
Independent - Dan Backs*
ND - Rick Murti
PC - Peter Sandhu
Wildrose Alliance - Phil Gamache

Alberta Liberal - Mo Elsalhy*
Green - Bryan Wyrostok
ND - Bridget Stirling
PC - David Xiao
Wildrose Alliance - Christine Jassman

Alberta Liberal - Debbie Cavaliere
Green - Amanda Doyle
ND - Pascal Ryffel
PC - Raj Sherman
Wildrose Alliance - Richard Guyon

Alberta Liberal - Aman Gill
Communist - Naomi Rankin
Green - Glen Argan
ND - Stephen Anderson
PC - Gene Zwozdesky*

Alberta Liberal - Weslyn Mather*
Green - David Hruska
ND - Christina Gray
PC - Carl Benito
Wildrose Alliance - Robert Leddy

Alberta Liberal - Kevin Taft*
Green - Cam Wakefield
ND - Erica Bullwinkle
PC - Wendy Andrews
Wildrose Alliance - Kyle VanHauwart

(ALP 3048)
Alberta Liberal - Rick Miller*
Green - Kate Wyrostok
ND - Michael Butler
PC - Fred Horne
Wildrose Alliance - John Baloun

Alberta Liberal - Tim Vant
Green - Adrian Cole
ND - Rachel Notley
PC - T.J. Keil

Alberta Liberal - Nancy Cavanaugh
Green - Valerie Kennedy
ND - Hana Razga
PC - Dave Hancock*

Alberta Liberal - Herb Coburn
Green - Larry Ashmore
ND - Ricardo de Menezes
PC - Ted Morton*

Alberta Liberal - Ross Jacobs
Green - Reg Normore
ND - Mel Kraley
PC - Guy Boutilier*

Alberta Liberal - Earl J. Woods
Green - Ryan Scheie
ND - Clayton Marsden
PC - Ed Stelmach*

Alberta Liberal - John Croken
Green - Rebecca Villebrun
ND - Neil Peacock
PC - Mel Knight*
Wildrose Alliance - Todd Loewen

Alberta Liberal - Augustine Ebinu
Green - Art Proctor
ND - Manuella Campbell
PC - Wayne Drysdale

Alberta Liberal - Stan Shedd
Green - John Barret
ND - Carolyn Boulton
PC - George Groenveld*
Wildrose Alliance - Daniel Doherty

Alberta Liberal - Garth Davis
Green - Lisa Grant
Independent - Anthony Harrarty
ND - Tophie Davies
PC - Luke Oullette*
Wildrose Alliance - Wayne Edmundson

Alberta Liberal - Alex Broadbent
ND - Della Drury
PC - Ray Danyluk*

Alberta Liberal - Edith McPhedran
Green - Joe Anglin
ND - Steve Bradshaw
PC - Ray Prins*
Wildrose Alliance - Daniel Freisen

Alberta Liberal - Joyce Assen
Green - Kevin Colton
ND - Lisa Erickson
PC - George Rogers*
Wildrose Alliance - Sharon MacLise

Alberta Liberal - Steve Noskey
Green - Bonnie Raho
ND- Habby Sharkawi
PC - Pearl Calahasen*

Alberta Liberal - Bridget Pastoor*
Green - Helen McMenamin
ND - Tom Moffatt
PC - Jason Herasemluk
Wildrose Alliance - Grant Shaw

Alberta Liberal - Bal Boora
Green - Helen McMenamin
ND - James Moore
PC - Greg Weadick
Wildrose Alliance - Matt Fox

Alberta Liberal - Everett Tanis
Green - Marie Read
ND - Duane Petluk
PC - Barry McFarland*
Wildrose Alliance - Kevin Kinahan

Alberta Liberal - Mike Judd
Green - Bryan Hunt
ND - Phil Burpee
PC - Evan Berger
Wildrose Alliance - Jack Macleod

Alberta Liberal - Karen Charlton
Green - Karen Kraus
ND - Diana Arnott
PC - Rob Renner*
Wildrose Alliance - Karen Kraus

Alberta Liberal - Tony Vonesch
Green - Kate Haddow
ND - Andy Davies
PC - Richard Marz*
Wildrose Alliance - Curt Engel

ND - Adele Boucher Rymhs
PC - Frank Oberle*
Wildrose Alliance - Georg Beinert

Alberta Liberal - Richard Farrand
Green - Rueben Tschetter
ND - Shawn Nielsen
PC - Mary-Ann Jablonski*
Wildrose Alliance - Urs Lehner

Alberta Liberal - Diane Kubanek
Green - Evan Bedford
ND - Johana Stark
PC - Cal Dallas
Wildrose Alliance - Ed Klop

Alberta Liberal - Norm McDougall
Green - Jennifer Ripley
ND - Jorge Souza
SC - Wilf Tricker
Separation Party - Bruce Hutton
PC - Ty Lund*
Wildrose Alliance - Fanie van Heerden

Alberta Liberal - Louise Rogers
Green - Rick Hoines
ND - Katherine Hay
PC - Iris Evans*
SC - Gordon Barrett

Alberta Liberal - Ray Boudreau
Green - Allan West
ND - Peter Cross
PC - Doug Horner*

Alberta Liberal - Jack Flaherty*
Green - Ross Vincent
ND - Katy Campbell
PC - Ken Allred

Alberta Liberal - Bill Fraser
Green - Nora Shea
ND - Shelina Brown
PC - Fred Lindsay*
Wildrose Alliance - Sandy Pariseau

Alberta Liberal - Jon Friel
Green - Kate Harrington
ND - Denny Holmwood
PC - Dave Quest

Alberta Liberal - Gerry Hart
Green - Chris Bayford
ND - Brian Stokes
PC - Arno Doerksen
Wildrose Alliance - Amanda Shehata

Alberta Liberal - Robert Sawatzky
Green - Ngaio Hotte
ND - Wendy Myshak
PC - Lloyd Snelgrove*

Alberta Liberal - Lisa Higgerty
Green - Scott Pickett
ND - Ken Kuzminski
PC - Robin Campbell
Wildrose Alliance - Earle Cunningham

Alberta Liberal - Keith Elliott
Green - Midge Lambert
ND - Sarah Mowatt
PC - Verlyn Olsen
Wildrose Alliance - Tyler Knelsen

Alberta Liberal - Mike Gray
ND - Leah Redmond
PC - George VanderBurg*
Wildrose Alliance - Link Byfield


p3? no thank you.

Apparently it's like buying schools at Costco...

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

by-election rundown.

I've had some time to compile some thoughts about yesterday's by-elections. Here are some of them:

Calgary Elbow
Alberta Liberal candidate Craig Cheffins was elected in Calgary Elbow - Ralph Klein's former constituency and a bedrock Tory constituency since 1971. This is significant for all the obvious reasons.

Though I don’t think Cheffins’ election in Calgary Elbow is a complete deathblow to the Stelmach Tories, I do think it is a substantial kick in the teeth. Voters in Calgary Elbow sent a strong message that Calgary may be more in-play than it has been in a long time. Many Calgarians aren’t happy with the Stelmach Tories and if strong local candidates like Craig Cheffins continue to let their name stand for Kevin Taft's Alberta Liberals in Calgary, the Tories could be in trouble in the next election.

While many Calgary Tory MLAs are rumoured to be stepping down in the next election, the Alberta Liberals are already starting to line up quality candidates like Kent Hehr (Calgary Buffalo), Carole Oliver (Calgary Fort), and Avalon Roberts (Calgary Glenmore).

For those of your keeping score, you can add another Ed Stelmach-point to the Strom-o-meter. In 1969, the Lougheed Tories wrestled away the Strathcona East constituency following Socred Premier Ernest Manning’s retirement. Peter Lougheed led the Tories to victory over Premier Harry Strom’s Social Credit Party in 1971.

Tory Jack Hayden’s landslide victory wasn’t a big surprise as Drumheller-Stettler is probably one of the strongest conservative constituencies in Alberta. There are some interesting results though. Alberta Liberal candidate Tom Dooley may have won 14% across the constituency, but won 9 out of the 11 Town of Drumheller polls (something that reflects the warm reaction on the doors last weekend).

If the Liberals are able to become competitive in Alberta’s smaller cities like Drumheller, then a number of normally safe-Tory rural ridings will shift to the in-play column.

Low Turnout
Albertans already hold the lowest voter turnout rates in Canada, so it wasn’t surprising that turnout was dismal yesterday. It doesn't downplay the significance of the Liberal victory in Calgary Elbow and I don’t think you can place the blame for this on any one thing, but his is a serious issue that needs to be discussed and addressed (in a soon to be written post).

RIP Alberta Alliance:
The results of this by-election were a clear deathblow for the Alberta Alliance. Even with the help of Alliance Leader Paul Hinman, Drumheller-Stettler Alliance candidate Dave France still only garnered 5% of the vote – 8% less than he won in the 2004 General Election – and 2% behind Alberta independent advocate John Rew. If the Alliance can’t win votes in Drumheller-Stettler, the question must be asked if they can win anywhere else.

The Unstoppable New Democrats
The New Democrats garnering 1% in Drumheller-Stettler and 3% in Calgary Elbow. These results certainly prove that the New Democrats are a force to be reckoned with in Alberta – watch out!

elbow deep in red.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

calgary gets a little grittier.

Alberta Liberal candidate Craig Cheffins was elected in tonight's by-election in Calgary Elbow (Ralph Klein's former seat).

Calgary Elbow
Craig Cheffins, Liberal - 4801 (46%)
Brian Heninger, PC - 4017 (38%)
George Read, Grn - 611 (6%)
Jane Greydanus, Alliance - 456 (4%)
Al Brown, NDP - 348 (3%)
Trevor Grover, SC - 175 (2%)
Jeff Willerton, Ind - 124 (1%)

Here's the unofficial poll-by-poll breakdown.

polls closed.

Let the vote counting begin.


Don't forget to get out and vote today if you live in Calgary Elbow or Drumheller-Stettler. The by-election polls are open from 9:00am to 8:00pm.

If you don't know where to vote, you can find your polling station here.

Monday, June 11, 2007

t-minus 1.

I spent the past weekend campaigning in Drumheller-Stettler by-election for Tom Dooley.

Being in Drumheller, I didn't expect a warm reception at the doors, so I was pretty surprised at the positive reaction I recieved when I told people I was campaigning for Tom Dooley (quite literally every second door).

It soon became fairly clear that Tom Dooley is a really well known man in the Drumheller area (he's also a really nice guy). As a local rancher, former County Councillor and Deputy Reeve, I get the feeling Tom Dooley do pretty well in Drumheller.

Even though Tory candidate Jack Hayden is considered the by many to be the frontrunner in this long-time rural 'c'onservative riding, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a substantial slip in the 'C'onservative vote this time around. I say this for a number of reasons.

First, it’s a by-election. In by-elections, voters can express their satifaction or disatisfaction with the governing party without changing government.

Second, with four right-wing candidates in the running, there is a good chance that the 'c'onservative vote will be split between Hayden, Social Credit candidate Larry Davidson (Davidson actually had noticeably more signs on private property in Drumheller than Hayden), Alliance candidate Dave France, and Alberta Independence advocate John Rew. This right-wing split could cause some interesting senarios when the votes are counted.

Third, the Balzac water management issue has exploded in Drumheller. I'm still blown away by how mad the people I spoke with on the doors are about this issue. When the Drumheller Valley Times runs "Liberals show PC's lied" as their frontpage headline, you know this has become a big issue.

As for the other smaller party candidates, it's always tough to predict how well the Greens will do, so it will be interesting to see how Jennifer Wigmore makes out (Her husband ran as the Green candidate in the area during the last Federal Election, so there is probably a certain amount of 'Wigmore' name recognition in the constituency). As for the New Democrats, well... the 'Brian Mason' campaign signs everywhere signal to me that if the New Democrats aren't even buying signs with their candidate's name on them, they've pretty much given up on these races (I hear the same signs have shown up in Calgary Elbow).

As for the Calgary Elbow race (which most of the media attention has been on), some of the media outlets seem to be calling it already, but I've been around enough election campaigns to know that it's not over until the polls close at 8pm (or on the third judicial recount in some cases). It's been a hot race between Alberta Liberal Craig Cheffins and Brian "the choker" Heninger, so it should add some excitement to tomorrow's day on the Alberta political scene.

Nether the less, both the Drumheller-Stettler and Calgary Elbow by-elections tomorrow will be uphill battles for any of the opposition candidates running as both constituencies have been held by the Tories for over 30 years

If you live in either of these constituencies, remember to get out and vote tomorrow!


More later, but what?

"I'd choke our premier," Heninger says to the disgruntled voter, the latest in a string of citizens who have expressed frustration with Progressive Conservative Premier Ed Stelmach.
UPDATE: As Dan points out, Stelmach has provided Albertans with an incredibly entertaining update:
According to reports, [Henninger] told a constituent at the door he would like to "choke" Stelmach. The premier said that kind of enthusiasm is exactly what he wants in his MLAs.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007


Public Interest Alberta held their Annual General Meeting on Saturday (I meant to go, but didn't make it in the end). At the AGM, Jackie Flanagan, Publisher of Alberta Views Magazine received the "Public Interest Award for her work with the magazine and as an advocate of the public good." Video clips of Flanagan's acceptance speech are below for your viewing pleasure:

budget more.

The Alberta Teachers' Association has launched a new website calling on Minister of Education Ron Liepert to not short-change our education system and to make education funding a priority. I would have to agree.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

flap flap flap.

The adventures of Honest Ed continue...

EDMONTON -- Premier Ed Stelmach admitted Monday that "overzealous" organizers for his Conservative leadership bid wrongly solicited a $10,000 cheque from a municipal garbage agency, money his campaign returned after he won the race.

The premier said the donation last summer from Beaver Regional Waste Management Service's Commission was legal but clearly unethical, though the Tofield-area body's records show the cheque was only returned a day before Stelmach's campaign had officially cleared its debt in February.

It's the second time Stelmach has blamed his campaigners for questionable practices, months after public outcry forced him to cancel a $5,000-a-ticket fundraising reception billed as a chance to have a private audience with Alberta's top politician.

Liberal Leader Kevin Taft, who made public the $10,000 donation in the legislature Monday, accused Stelmach of developing a "conscience of convenience" once the leader had a campaign surplus and knew his finances faced more public scrutiny.

"It was only after they began to feel they would be watched that they developed a conscience and refunded the money," Taft told reporters.
And yet some people will tell me that donations to leadership races have no business being public.

I'm of the belief that there should be much more accoutability through involvement by Elections Alberta in internal party financial and fundraising rules similar to those of Elections Canada.

Can you imagine an Alberta where an end would be put to massive secret and loophole backdoor out-of-province political donations?


UPDATE: Calgary Grit's take on Stelmach's ""The donation might have been legal, it certainly was not ethical." comment.

Monday, June 04, 2007

alberta's new balance of power?

A good friend passed along this message to me:

Alberta's newfound fiscal capacity has led many to predict it will lead to a new balance of power and perhaps even instability in the federation. How will Alberta choose to exercise this political and economic clout? How will the federal government, and the other provinces, react? And to what extent will this affect the regional balance of power and the national agenda? These were the questions that were asked at a recent Public Policy Forum event held at the Ranchmen's Club in Calgary.
At the event, presentations were made by the Honourable Rona Ambrose, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs and Tom Courchene, Professor of Economic and Financial Policy at Queen's University. You can read Minister Ambrose’s speech here and Dr. Courchene’s speech here.

kevin taft offers albertans a plan.

I know I already posted one of the videos already, but four new online videos have been released with Alberta Liberal Leader Kevin Taft speaking about the Alberta Liberal plan for affordable housing, Alberta’s Creative Economy, Alberta’s Water, and Sustaining Alberta’s future.