Today we saw an inevitable announcement in our Leadership Campaign.
Over the last few hours, I’ve been asked how I feel about my opponent Rick Fraser receiving an endorsement from fellow sitting Alberta Party MLA Karen McPherson.
My honest answer is completely unsurprised.
It did not come as a surprise to me, and nor should it come as a surprise to anyone. The fact that two of the Party’s sitting MLAs would be able to find benefit in supporting each other should not come as a shock. While I hold both Rick and Karen in the highest regard, I also recognize that Rick has been a member of the party for just a few months and Karen for a few more months than that. So I agree with their assessment that it is important for them to be able to demonstrate solidarity as they prepare to return to their full time work at the legislature shortly.
For two MLAs so new to the Party, showing that solidarity presents a strong face when they begin the task of representing both the needs of their constituents, their own needs and furthering the Party’s voice in the legislature. This means that they will be showing a strong Alberta Party Caucus with Greg, and Ricks participation in the race supported by an MLA that he will work with in the legislature presents a positive message to the other MLAs from across Alberta for the Party as they return to session.
If on February 27 I am elected leader of the Alberta Party I know I will be able to work constructively with all of our Alberta Party MLAs, regardless of who they supported in the Leadership.
As someone who has been a member of the Alberta Party for more than three years, with three years invested in the party, I know that in order to achieve the growth required to be successful in the 2019 election, we need a leader who is not trying to balance work in the legislature and in committees with the work of travelling across the province to build the party that we need and deserve. A leader like that simply won’t have the time and resources to build our Party as effectively and widely as someone who has made preparing the Alberta Party for the 2019 election their singular professional goal.
I have committed to doing exactly that. I have committed to not running in any by-elections outside of my home riding prior to the 2019 General Election because I know that our party needs to be built by someone travelling across the province, not from within the legislature. I am committed to making my efforts focused on party building, as our party deserves a leader who can build the Alberta Party with a singular focus in order for us to be the Party that I know we can be and change the way politics is done in Alberta in 2019.
This is why it is so deeply humbling and also a great source of pride that I am able to announce that I have officially been endorsed by a major party figure, and one whose time in the party far exceeds that of my opponents and even myself. Will Munsey joined the Alberta Party in the summer of 2009 when there were fewer than 20 members. He served as Alberta Party President beginning in 2012 until stepping down to contest the 2014 by-election. Will believes government’s role is to ensure these basics that make Alberta such a wonderful place to live: an amazing public education, a high standard of public health care, other essential services such as safeguarding the equality and rights of individuals, protecting the environment, and the efficient, ethical and transparent use of public money. See Will Munsey’s endorsement video below for more.