Local MLA reflects on recent PC resginations
By: Sara Wilson
| Posted: Thursday, Mar 20, 2014 01:28 pm
Editor’s Note: Premier Alison Rediford resigned on March 19 after the Airdrie City View went to press
It’s been a difficult week for Premier Alison Redford as two members of her cabinet resigned and took up independent seats.
Donna Kennedy-Glans, an associate minister for electricity and renewable energy, a junior cabinet position, released her resignation letter citing frustrations with her ability “to make changes.”
“Since being elected… particularly since joining Cabinet, I am increasingly convinced that elements of this 43-year-old government are simply unable to make the changes needed to achieve that dream of a better Alberta. I still believe in public service and in politics. I still believe in that dream. I’ll stay in my seat, sitting as an Independent, because, I believe, I can better serve my constituents this way. It’s time to make politics in Alberta better.”
Kennedy-Glans, MLA for Calgary-Varsity, was thought to be an up-and-coming star within the party by most political analysts.
Her resignation comes after Len Webber announced that he would also be resigning from his position as MLA for Calgary-Foothills on March 12.
Webber held the seat for three terms, and he announced that he will also sit as an Independent.
“I think Donna (Kennedy-Glans) said it best, it’s not about Redford, this is about party entitlement,” Airdrie MLA Rob Anderson said. “When you have a party that has been in power for 43 years, they feel they have a divine right.”
Anderson believes that the PC’s history with majority governments have left the party “tired and old.”
Redford leadership has been questioned recently with senior party officials meeting with the premier on March 17 to discuss a “work plan” to help mend her image.
Trouble began for the premier when it was revealed that her trip to South Africa to participate in Nelson Mandela’s funeral, cost tax payers $45,000 in December 2013.
Frustrations began to elevate after it was also revealed that Redford had used government planes to fly her daughter and her daughter’s friend on trips amounting to over $3,000 in costs.
Amid heavy scrutiny from the Opposition, Redford repaid the $45,000 on March 12, after weeks of statements saying she would not repay the money.
Anderson explained that Kennedy-Glans and Webber were not approached by the Opposition after their resignations.
“We’re not interested in taking on new members,” Anderson said. “We have lots of good candidates (to run in the next election). We want a new government, with new members, not ones that owe anything or carry baggage.”