Watch above: Fresh off his leadership victory, Jim Prentice has said he prefers to run in a Calgary byelection to become an elected MLA. As Gary Bobrovitz reports, Prentice must still win a byelection to become an MLA to sit in the Alberta legislature.
ALBERTA — Premier Dave Hancock is scheduled to meet with premier-designate Jim Prentice Monday morning to begin the transition of the Office of the Premier. It will take place at 8 a.m. at the Government house in Edmonton.
On Sunday, Prentice met with fellow leadership candidates Thomas Lukaszuk and RicMcIver to discuss ways to move the party forward.
“There is absolutely nothing easy about leadership campaigns, and both these men worked extremely hard this summer,” said Prentice of Lukaszuk and McIver. “I’m grateful for the opportunity I had to share my summer with them on the campaign trail, and I am looking forward to working together with them, and the entire caucus, to unite the party and move into a new era for Alberta.”
Prentice says the three men exchanged ideas and discussed a common vision for the party and a “return to good government.”
“As leader, I will ask every volunteer who has worked on all of our campaigns to join with me in rebuilding our party,” said Prentice. “In my 40 years in this party I have never seen such a talented group of young volunteers, and I am excited about the next generation of the Progressive Conservative party.”
To help with the task, Prentice has put together a five-person transition team consisting of three prominent business people, Alberta MLA Robin Campbell and the former mayor of Edmonton Stephen Mandel.
Last month, Mandel said he might consider running as MLA under Prentice. However, following Saturday’s win by Prentice, Mandel said he hasn’t made any decisions.
Mandel served as mayor of Edmonton from 2004 to 2013.
The chair of Prentice’s transition team will be Tim Hearn, former chair and CEO of Imperial Oil. Hearn is currently chair of Hearn & Associates.
Sarah Raiss and Robert Seidel are also on the team. (See full biographies below).
“This is a group of talented, principled and well respected Albertans who will assist in the transition to a new Progressive Conservative government, and I am honoured to have them on my team,” said Prentice.
“Under my leadership we will restore the bond of trust between Albertans and their elected officials, and return to sound conservative fiscal principles.”
Fresh off his leadership victory Prentice has said he prefers to run in a Calgary byelection to become an elected MLA and Prentice must still win a byelection to become an MLA and sit in the Alberta legislature.
He will likely run in Calgary’s northwest, where he held a seat as a three time federal M.P.
Calgarian Ernie Hiskewich says Prentice has been clean cut so far.
“And (Prentice) probably has a good chance but he’s got a lot of work to do to get the people’s confidence back I think,” Hiskewich.
Al White lives in the northwest and said he doesn’t fully trust the Wildrose party so he’ll likely vote Prentice, “He seems like an honest guy a good businessman from what I understand,” White said.
Phyllis Hiskewich of Calgary said it will be a hard uphill battle for Prentice.
“Because of all the down slopes and so many disappointments,” Hiskewich said about the PC party.
Prentice has also named his transition team consisting of three prominent business people, Alberta MLA Robin Campbell and the former mayor of Edmonton Stephen Mandel.
The premier-designate knows he must rebuild both the PC party and other relationships after the low voter turnout.
“To have only 23 thousand vote I think that’s a statement that people have broken that tie to the pc’s they no longer see them as the obvious choice in the next election,” said Wildrose leader Danielle Smith.
Calgary mayor Naheed Nenshi says judging from the low voter turnout, Prentice still has some work to do to build a mandate.
“If premier-designate Prentice wants to win the next election, he’s gonna have to build a strong coalition within the cities in Alberta,” Nenshi said. “Sometimes there’s a tendency on the part of provincial politicians to make the mayors their enemy. To fight and stuff.”
A provincial general election is mandated by legislation for the spring of 2016. Jim Prentice will become the 16th premier of Alberta when he is sworn into office.
Prentice won the Alberta PC leadership race Saturday night with 77 per cent of the votes.
Full biographies of all five people on Prentice’s transition team below:
The two-day leadership vote was marred by problems with the PC party’s new electronic voting system.
Many party members complained they could not get their PIN numbers or could not dial in or log on to vote.
Party executive director Kelley Charlebois says he expects the party will review the voting system at its annual general meeting in November.