Our own dirty little ‘House of Cards’

We only need consider how Rick Strankman was treated to ask ourselves is Jason Kenney really the leader we want for Alberta?

Nothing against Nate Horner, but Kenney and his insiders have manipulated the United Conservative Party (UCP) party to clearly sideline former Wildrose party members.

Released emails between the Kenney and Jeff Callaway’s UCP leadership campaigns and audio recordings from the Callaway insider club are telling.

Kenney and Callaway concocted a scheme to ensure former Wildrose Leader, Brian Jean could not win the leadership of the UCP.

It’s clear Callaway went into the leadership race to criticize and attack Jean, then as pre-arranged with Kenney operatives, drop out of the race and throw his support behind Kenney when enough damage had been inflicted on Jean.

Now Callaway, his wife and other closely connected people have gone to court to stop the investigation into their possible donation violations.

Brian Jean is honourable and honest—a conservative with principles who was defeated by the backroom political manoeuvring of the Kenney/Calloway team. It’s becoming obvious Alberta has its own dirty little ‘House of Cards’ script of cynical politics.

Kenney is not a conservative. He’s a libertarian, neo-liberal and a sadopopulist, whose policies are designed to help the richest of the rich, hurt the most vulnerable in society and gain support through divisive politics.

The Callaway/Kenney campaigns lied about Jean’s Christian values, his position on certain pieces of legislation and accused him of cheating during the leadership race.

Now being challenged with hard facts, Kenney is using the Trump standard for sleazy politics—lie, deny and deflect.

Kenney has a history of shadiness, including cheating the taxpayer of $17,000 between 2012 and 2016 when he claimed as his primary residence the basement of his mother’s bungalow in a Calgary retirement community.

Before that he claimed a room in his parent’s house.

The rules are clear; a primary residence is where the member spends weekends and most of his time when the House is not sitting.

The evidence collected against Kenney was the low number of airline tickets purchased to and from Calgary.

When challenged, Kenney used Trumpian techniques—attack the lawyer who had the facts and play the good son card, “I was just helping my mom”.

Wrong answer Kenney.

It is your personal responsibility if you choose to help your mom, not our tax dollars.

Kenney is Alberta’s very own Mike Duffy. Remember, Mike, the man who smelled up the Conservative Party to high heaven when caught claiming his cabin on P.E.I. as his principal residence.

Breaking election donation rules wasn’t beyond Kenney either.

In 2016 while claiming Alberta as his primary residence, he donated to the Ontario Conservatives. Kenney has been in politics far too long to not know that a non-resident donating to political campaigns is illegal.

Surely personal character and integrity should matter when choosing a leader.

If it were not for the Kenney/Calloway attack on the democratic process during the election of the leader of the UCP, today our choice could have been between four honourable politicians, Brian Jean, Rachel Notley, Stephen Mandel and David Khan, and our decision would have been based on policy platforms, rather than character.

 

Brenda Schimke

ECA Review

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