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Canada A list of candidates vying to become United Conservative leader and Alberta premier

13:11  27 july  2022
13:11  27 july  2022 Source:   msn.com

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MEDICINE HAT, ALBERTA, CANADA — Seven candidates vying to become the next United Conservative Party leader and Alberta premier are to tackle health, the economy and other key issues in their first debate in Medicine Hat, Alta., on Wednesday.

  A list of candidates vying to become United Conservative leader and Alberta premier © Provided by The Canadian Press

Here is a look at the contenders:

Leela Aheer: UCP backbench legislature member for Chestermere-Strathmore. Was member of Kenney's original cabinet as minister for culture, multiculturalism and the status of women. She was removed from cabinet in 2021 after criticizing Kenney's handling of the COVID-19 pandemic. Promises to restore trust in the party and to work to help the underprivileged.

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Brian Jean: UCP backbench member for Fort McMurray-Lac La Biche. Former Wildrose Party leader and co-founder of the UCP when his party merged with Kenney's Progressive Conservatives in 2017. Lost to Kenney in first UCP leadership race. Promises changes to help Albertans fight inflation, including caps to avoid price gouging at gasoline pumps.

Todd Loewen: Backbench member for Central Peace-Notley constituency. Sits as an Independent after being voted out of the UCP caucus in 2021 for urging Kenney to resign. Promises to restore trust in the party and push for greater Alberta autonomy in dealings with Ottawa.

Rajan Sawhney: UCP legislature member representing Calgary-North East. Served as minister for community and social services, then in transportation. Promises to hold public inquiry into Alberta's COVID-19 response. Promising to re-index critical programs that aid low-income Albertans to help people deal with inflation.

Up for debate: meet the Alberta UCP's official candidates vying to replace Jason Kenney

  Up for debate: meet the Alberta UCP's official candidates vying to replace Jason Kenney Alberta’s UCP has announced seven approved candidates in the running to take over Premier Jason Kenney’s job in the fall, days before they will take the stage in their first official debate. Scheduled Wednesday for 5 p.m. in Medicine Hat, the debate will come after weeks of promises made on the campaign trail, including tackling affordability, allocating the province’s recent $3.9-billion surplus , addressing public health care and the fallout of COVID-19, and Alberta’s fight with Ottawa.

Rebecca Schulz: UCP member for Calgary-Shaw. Was minister of children's services. Promises to fight for a better deal with the federal government and to improve the economy. Pledging to find efficiencies in the health bureaucracy and build incentives to recruit more family doctors.

Danielle Smith: Former Wildrose party leader who led floor-crossing to Progressive Conservatives in 2014. Has since worked in business and as a radio talk-show host. Promises to pass a law allowing Alberta to ignore federal laws and court decisions deemed counter to the province's interests.

Travis Toews: UCP member representing Grande-Prairie Wapiti. Had been finance minister since the start of the UCP government. Promises to fight for Alberta's interests within Confederation through measures such as an opt-in provincial pension plan, an Alberta police force, and pushing for changes to equalization.

Note: Sawhney, Schulz and Toews stepped down from cabinet to avoid potential conflict of interest during the leadership run.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 27, 2022.

Dean Bennett, The Canadian Press

Michael Taube: Sorry, Red Tories, but Poilievre is the one reaffirming conservative values .
The Conservative leadership race is a battle for the heart and soul of the party, that is, a political realignment to ensure the party and movement is refocused, ideologically consistent and on the right track to form government. By this I don’t mean that the party is drifting from core conservative values, as retired Conservative Senator Marjory LeBreton has suggested, but rather the complete opposite, that those values are actually being reaffirmed. In a June 26 interview with Mercedes Stephenson on Global’s The West Block, LeBreton said she was “very, very worried … about what’s happening to the party and what’s happening during this leadership debate.

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This is interesting!