Friday, February 11, 2011

This Week in Alberta: A Quick Glance at the PC Leadership Race

With Stelmach's announcement that he will stay on as Premier until this fall, there's plenty of time for his would-be-successors to put together campaign teams and sign up Albertans. Still, the field is starting to take shape - here's a quick overview of the likely candidates:

The PCs have two declared candidates - Ted "The Man" Morton and Doug "Doug" Horner. Alison Redford has yet to declare but, like most reasonably competent Cabinet Ministers with name recognition, she is expected to run. Gene Zwozdesky is thinking about it, if only to force everyone in Alberta to learn how to spell and pronounce his name.

Dough Griffiths may not be well known, but he's young and has more original ideas than the rest of the PC caucus put together. He'd be a welcome addition to the contest.

Jonathan Denis is also young and ambitious, but has said it's not his time yet.

Dave Hancock could represent the left...but there doesn't seem to be much point in running when he has no chance of victory.

Those are the likeliest suspects from within the PC caucus but what about a star outsider? Well, I wouldn't count on it.

Jim Dinning has simultaneously ruled out and mused about another run. Given it takes the man 40 minutes to order a donut, I wouldn't expect a decision any time soon, but most PCs I know aren't expecting another run from Jim.

Or, for that mater, from the other Jim - after all, Prentice has money to make in the private sector and his ambitions likely lie federally. Dave Bronconnier still smells too much like a Liberal. Preston Manning would have made a great Premier had he run in 2006...but he turns 70 next year. I'm hoping Craig Chandler runs, but only because Chandler is a bottomless source of blog material.

One outsider who sounds like he might be giving it a go is Gary Mar - Alberta's current Washington ambassador, and a former Health Minister.

I wouldn't expect any federal Tories to jump - the Cabinet Ministers have too much to lose, and the backbenchers lack the profile to mount a credible challenge. If anyone does run, James Rajotte seems like the most likely candidate.

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7 Comments:

  • Gary Mar seems like an interesting choice.

    By Blogger Progressive Tory, at 10:24 AM  

  • It'll be a Ted Morton coronation.

    After getting rid of their "Stelmach", the federal Liberals didn't even bother with a vote. Same thing could happen here.

    Alison Redford is wasted at the provincial level; I hope she goes federal instead.

    By Blogger Robert Vollman, at 12:31 PM  

  • There's a typo that needs fixing.

    You wrote "Preston Manning would have made a great Premier had he run in 2006 …"

    It ought to read "Preston Manning would have made a great Premier had he run in 1906 …"

    Missed it by that much. ;-)

    By Blogger Curtis, at 1:10 PM  

  • Ahh...I don't agree with Preston on much, but he would have given a lifeless PC party the shot in the arm they needed.

    If nothing else, it would have been interesting to see "Think Big" applied in practice. Sure, it might not have worked, but it would have been far more fascinating than the meandering leadership of Ed Stelmach.

    By Blogger calgarygrit, at 4:10 PM  

  • Isn't being positioned as an unassailable front-runner what sank Jim Dinning's run in 2006? I think it's a little early to crown Ted Morton, and he may actually not appreciate any speculation about foregone conclusions.

    By Blogger Party of One, at 6:14 PM  

  • Chandler is running.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:50 PM  

  • Ahem, Jonathan Denis, *QC*. Can't forget that last well-earned honorific.

    By Blogger matt, at 1:26 AM  

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