Tories to pick new leader on Sept. 6

The Alberta’s Progressive Conservative party has slightly tweaked the way it will pick its new leader and Alberta’s new premier.

By JOSH ALDRICH

Advocate staff and the Canadian Press

The Alberta’s Progressive Conservative party has slightly tweaked the way it will pick its new leader and Alberta’s new premier.

The PCA met in Red Deer on Monday night, taking three hours to decide to stick with the two-vote format that elected former leader Alison Redford, who stepped down last week.

The biggest change is that instead of three candidates moving on to the second vote, only the top two will advance this time.

Advanced Education Minister Dave Hancock will serve as premier until the party picks its new leader, but he has said he won’t run to become party leader.

The first vote will take place on Sept. 6, and if one candidate has more than 50 per cent of the vote, they will become the new leader. If no candidate earns 50 per cent, a second vote between the top two nominees will happen on Sept. 20.

Several formats were discussed among delegates in the closed-door meeting, said Jim McCormick, president of the Progressive Conservative Association of Alberta.

“It’s not a responsibility we took lightly and we put together a set of rules that will see the best candidate become the new leader of the Progressive Conservative Association of Alberta and premier of this province,” he said.

A deadline for nominations has not been set, though McCormick said that date should be decided upon in the next 10 days.

One change that was made was the cost to run. Each candidate will now have to make a $50,000 non-refundable deposit as part of their nomination.

In 2006, it cost $15,000 for a nominated candidate while in 2011 it cost $40,000.

“We think that qualified candidates will be capable of raising money and we think that is not an unreasonable amount to expect in this case,” said McCormick.

The Tories have faced considerable difficulty in raising funds in recent years, being surpassed by the Wildrose Party, the official Opposition.

Still McCormick said what the Wildrose Party has done did not play into their decision to boost the cost of running.

“We’ve made some changes, are we concerned? No,” he said. “What the other parties have to say or do doesn’t play into our decision.”

Municipal Affairs Minister Ken Hughes said Monday he’s interested in running for the leadership, but wants to set up a committee and a website to gauge public support before he commits.

“It’s not clear that I am going to run. I’m prepared to have a thoughtful conversation with Albertans. I’m prepared to listen,” Hughes said.

“I think it’s really important that the PC party and the government of Alberta to date demonstrate that they can listen and are prepared to listen to Albertans.”

In another development, a website popped up urging the public to draft Conservative Sen. Scott Tannas for the job. The site scottforleader.com describes him as a respected businessman, listener and consensus builder and says he would bring a “fresh approach to leadership.”

Tannas, a resident of High River, south of Calgary, did not immediately respond to requests for an interview.

One of the major talking points discussed in the meeting was to when the election process would take place, by law they have to hold it between four and six months after the resignation of their leader, and they opted to push it too the maximum.

“It was discussed at length, both for the timing, and it was decided in the end this was the route and timing for us to go,” said McCormick.

All Tory members over the age of 14 are eligible to vote in the leadership process.

jaldrich@bprda.wpengine.com

Just Posted

Red Deerians shop for exotic plants at spring plant sale

Exotic plants are popular at the Red Deer & District Garden Club’s… Continue reading

Central Albertans come together to end MS

Red Deer’s Bre Fitzpatrick has MS. The medication the 34-year-old is on… Continue reading

Wildfire crews watching for dangerous wind shift in High Level, Alta.

HIGH LEVEL, Alta. — Crews battling an enormous wildfire just outside the… Continue reading

New poll suggests one-third don’t want politicians to wear religious symbols

OTTAWA — While most Canadians firmly back the Charter of Rights and… Continue reading

Red Deer stamp-collecting event a hit, local club expected to start in fall

Postage stamp-loving Red Deerians can expect to have a place to gather… Continue reading

WATCH: Cars, airplanes, motorcyles on display at Red Deer Airport

Cars, motorcycle and airplane enthusiasts united at the Red Deer Airport Sunday… Continue reading

Cast your votes for the Best of Red Deer

Nominations for the Best of Red Deer Readers’ Choice Awards are officially… Continue reading

Bid to get D-Day beaches added to list of UN World Heritage Sites in limbo

OTTAWA — The beaches of Normandy, where the Allies stormed ashore to… Continue reading

Could this 20-year-old Montreal polyglot be Canada’s most multilingual student?

MONTREAL — Georges Awaad answers the phone with a polite “Hello,” but… Continue reading

Feds lay out proposed new rules for voice, video recorders in locomotives

OTTAWA — The federal Liberals have laid out their proposal for rules… Continue reading

Trump’s trophy day of sumo, golf and cheeseburgers in Japan

TOKYO — President Donald Trump presented a special U.S.-made trophy to the… Continue reading

Two dead, one seriously injured, following explosion in Calgary home’s garage

CALGARY — Police in Calgary say they believe a house fire where… Continue reading

Raptors fans spill onto the streets ahead of potentially historic game

Cars honked, exhilarated fans chanted and long lines formed outside bars and… Continue reading

Most Read