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Tuesday, February 05, 2008

alberta votes 2008! throne speech recap.

Welcome to Alberta's 2008 provincial election campaign!

Before I get started on some serious election coverage, here's a quick recap of yesterday's Speech from the Throne. Though I don't think Tory leader Ed Stelmach's campaign launch throne speech was as fabulous as one of my fellow bloggers has gushed, I don't think it was really anything awful either. It felt like a typical Ed Stelmach-sytle Throne Speech - inoffensive, filled with re-announcements, and promises to continue projects that are already underway. Because of this, I'll focus on some key points that I piqued my interest...

- Though there was nearly no mention of Alberta's municipalities in the speech, there was a lot of talk of catching up and building modern infrastructure. I'm assuming this means that Ed Stelmach had nothing to do with Alberta falling behind on infrastructure development while he was Minister of Infrastructure & Transportation from 1999 to 2004.

- As had been previously semi-announced, Health Care Premiums are on the chopping block within four years. I'm not sure why it's going to take four years (I assume a 37-year-old government can only move so fast), but this is generally a positive step that Alberta's opposition parties and public interest groups been advocating for over the past decade.

- Ed Stelmach has made a commitment to remain vigilant in his fight the Pine Beetle. I'm not sure how Stelmach is planning to fight the beetles, but I can't help but imagine Ed Stelmach and Ray Danyluk running around the forest dressed up like Batman and Robin and squishing thousands of helpless little Pine Beetles with the bottoms of their boots. Go get 'em, Ed!

The Edmonton Journal's Graham Thomsons picked up a good point raised by Alberta Liberal Leader Kevin Taft as to why Ed Stelmach was using the taxpayer provided Legislature Media Conference room for what was essentially a campaign launch announcement (equipped with PC Campaign Staff). I was standing in the back of the room during the media conference and it was interesting to see Stelmach is slowly beginning to improve his public speaking skills compared to when he became Premier a year ago.

Ed Stelmach may be slowly improving his public speaking skills, but he'll need to do better than he did yesterday if he's serious about communicating with Albertans in a meaningful way over the next 28 days.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Almost 24 hours into the campaign and it seems like no one in the media has seen or heard from Kevin Taft since yesterday. Is this the Liberal campaign Dave? Stay quiet and hope for the best?

Last night the CBC and CTV nightly news both focused extensively on Brian Mason of the NDP. Then this morning the first Edmonton Journal article about an opposition party was a piece on the NDP's pledge to reopen the royalty issue. And on the drive in to work I saw a blanket of NDP signs throughout Mill Woods, Millcreek and Edmonton - Centre.

Are Kevin Taft and the Liberals taking the cities for granted or are they just off to a very slow start?