Recently I answered a poll on what the most important election issue was to me, without hesitation I answered democratic reform. Now many of you will have answered economy, education, or health care but for me NONE of these can be fixed until the power of the Alberta Government is put back into the hands of the people.
Prior to the writ drop the governing party continued with an arrogant display of power and entitlement. One example is the no meet committee that was first brought to the public by Scott Hennig of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation. 21members of an all party MLA committee paid for 39 months of doing nothing. All the members are guilty in taking this money, and I doubt if the CTF hadn't made it public I doubt any of them would have paid it back. Shortly after the opposition MLA's in a move to save face decided they would pay back the money they had received for the 39 months. Smart move.
The provinces Premier at the time and the PC Party MLA's however scoffed at the idea. Redford dismissed the reimbursements as a political "stunt," while government house leader Dave Hancock called it "grandstanding. Shortly after getting continuously hammered in the Alberta legislature the PC caucus decided they would pay back 6 months worth of pay of the 39 months collected. The Premier said it was a decision of caucus and she was pleased. "I asked caucus to discuss that and that was the decision they came to and I'm pleased they did." Asserting if the voters were not happy the election was coming up and the voters would decide their fate. There finally a caucus decision knowing the consequence.
Now the polls come in showing a historic drop in the PC popularity, never seen in the 41 years of the Tory dynasty.
Democracy...throw it out the window. In dictator like fashion, Premier Redford says "all Progressive Conservative MLAs will be expected to pay back every penny of money received from the committee that has not met since 2008. Any MLAs who do not will not have a place in our Progressive Conservative caucus." as well as "Further, the overly generous transition allowances that are paid to retiring MLAs are suspended from this day for-ward, and I will not accept any transition allowance, win, lose or draw."
This is where she crosses the democratic line. How does she think she has the power to boot "ELECTED" officials from government. These are people the voters chose, not her. Disgusting in my opinion. As far as the transition allowances, when did it become a premiers decision to suspend them? If I am not mistaken it is determined by the Member Services committee. This is a party that has run top down for too long, going as far as bullying it's own members and showing complete disrespect for the way democracy in the legislature works. Real Life Leadership? Not in my opinion.
We elect our members in each riding to represent us in the legislature, which gives us a voice in government. When we give a leader so much power that they decide what happens to our elected voice, we create our own issues.
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