Alta. newcomers told to accept conservatism or leave
CALGARY — A man who wants to run for the Alberta Progressive Conservatives says newcomers to the province must “adapt to our rules and voting patterns” or go back to where they came from.
Craig Chandler, who wants to represent the Calgary riding of Calgary Egmont, says people who have moved to Alberta have told him during his doorknocking campaign that they intend to vote Liberal.
Mr. Chandler says the Conservative culture is what created the boom in Alberta and if people don't like it, they should leave.
Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach said Wednesday that Mr. Chandler does not speak for the Progressive Conservative Party of Alberta.
“This province has welcomed newcomers and we will continue to welcome newcomers.”
David Taras, a political science professor at the University of Calgary, said in the last provincial election, most Alberta voters did not vote for the Tories.
“So when you tell the majority of Albertans to take a hike, they may be the ones to tell you to take a political hike.”
Despite six Tory MLAs not running for re-election, Premier Ed Stelmach dismissed claims Wednesday it reflects poorly on his leadership and instead proves there is renewal within his government.
But the head of a group dedicated to the Conservative party's grassroots says there haven't been any significant gains in applying democratic reforms to the party or its relationship with members, prompting an exodus of incumbent MLAs.
One nomination race is already making headlines, with Craig Chandler's bid to replace Herard in Calgary Egmont.
Chandler - whose fundraising chair has stepped down to dedicate himself to his role as president of the riding's constituency association - said this week that new Albertans who don't buy into the province's "small "c" conservative values" should leave.
"Our culture is conservative. People need to remember we vote conservative, that's what helps us make it work," he said.
Stelmach, asked about Chandler's position, said the would-be candidate doesn't speak for the party.
"I do," the premier said. "And we're an open party."
X does not mark the spot when it comes to wannabe MLA Craig Chandler. The Tories need to squash his vote-Conservative-or-leave drivel
By RICK BELL
Just what Premier Ed needs, Craig Chandler's motor mouth.
Chandler, the man who has wandered the wilderness only the most fierce of the far right call home, has found a new place to play politician.
Respected Calgary Egmont Tory MLA Denis Herard is retiring from public life and Kooky Craig is hoping to be the Conservative candidate to replace him.
Kooky Craig claims he's sold "a very substantial amount of memberships" in the Tory party and has both volunteers and paid staff busy on the hustings. His Progressive Group of Independent Business can't take over the entire Conservative party but they can attempt to take one seat by winning the Tory nomination in one riding.
This is not fringe follies. It can be done.
And what does Kooky Craig stutter in cyberspace these past few days? What is his message? Vote Conservative or leave. You read it right.
Chandler cites a recent poll showing Tory numbers continuing to crater in this city and throughout Alberta.
The wannabe Tory MLA says it's not Ed's fault. It's them, those awful hordes who have come from elsewhere and not swallowed the Conservative Kool-Aid.
"Alberta is growing in a way that was never expected and many of the people coming here do not truly appreciate Alberta or even understand the history of this province or the relationship with the Alberta Progressive Conservative party," says Chandler, who hails from ... I believe... Ontario.
Of course unlike the right wing bloggers who get credited with their posts in the MSM as usual the real journalists were silent about their sources coming from Progressive Citizen Journalists.
We deserve to pat ourselves on the back since this would not have made the news without us.
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