Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Cabinet Shuffle

In most places, the first cabinet after an election is called a "new" Cabinet. In Alberta? It's called a cabinet shuffle. And, even as far as cabinet shuffles go, this one was minor with only two ministers changing portfolios. A few thoughts on the new PC cabinet:

1. By most standards, representing the two cities that make up two thirds of Alberta's population with under 40% of the cabinet spots, would be a slight. After only placing three Calgarians and one Edmontonian in his first Cabinet, this is likely enough to get Ed rave reviews.

2. Likewise, the seven women in this Cabinet is a massive jump from the two who made his first Cabinet. Of note, Iris Evans gets Finance.

3. The Cabinet has ballooned to 24, after Stelmach promised to cut its size during the leadership race. In addition, there are 10 parliamentary assistants (think Parliamentary Secretaries) and 5 cabinet committee chairs. So, in other words, if you're a Tory MLA who didn't get something today, you're in the minority.

4. Guy Boutlier is the only person dumped from Cabinet. Ouch.

5. Stelmach's most effective Minister, Dave Hancock, gets shuffled out of health, and into Education.

6. The "giant-killer killer", Alison Redford, winds up in Justice. Not bad for a rookie and it sure beats being a backbench MP in Ottawa, which she would have been had she beaten Rob Anders for the Calgary West nomination when she ran against him.

So, from the optics perspective, the only real knock Stelmach will get is from increasing the size of the Cabinet. Might be a good place to start the attacks if the ALP want to portray themselves as the fiscally conservative alternative in Alberta.

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  • This is a *wait and see* kind of post.

    In the mean time . . .

    Reminder. . . TAR SANDS ... 9PM tonight..CBC.

    Norway, China, India want to lease. No no no!

    2 Billion$ to start.. 8 Billion$ to cook out oil.

    Peter Lougheed, [thank God for reason] ** It*s not going anywhere...slow down, take it easy.**

    Don*t miss it. 9:00 PM.

    Maybe there will be less SPIN on this CBC Documentary. ./
    Thursday March 13, 2008 at 9pm on CBC-TV
    repeating Sunday March 16 at 8pm ET on CBC Newsworld
    = TG

    By Blogger TonyGuitar, at 1:12 a.m.  

  • Even Brian Mason was calling the new cabinet bloated.

    By Blogger Brian Dell, at 2:35 a.m.  

  • Well, Brian's a more tastefully minimalist kind of guy. He opted for a smaller caucus with simpler, more basic lines.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:56 a.m.  

  • I'm inclined to think the creation of parliamentary assistants could be a good thing. Maybe the positions will function to train more capable MLAs who can replace the particularly inept ministers who kept their posts (I'm looking at you George Groeneveld, Janis Tarchuk, Ray Danyluk) next time Cabinet gets shuffled, which will apparently in about 18 months or so. If that's the case, it could be a worthwhile investment. Then again, maybe they'll serve to free up ministers for more international travel, who knows...

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:04 a.m.  

  • I wonder how Mason will divide up the critic responsibilities

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:00 a.m.  

  • Boutilier getting the boot is the best part of the new Cabinet. With him and Oberg gone the integrity of the Stelmach Cabinet will be much imporved.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:18 a.m.  

  • Rob Anderson gets PA eh?? I guess that is what 5 months at the bar gets you....other lawyers in caucus must be upset

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:28 p.m.  

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