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Politics

Alberta Party Leader Greg Clark resigns, triggers leadership race

Former Alberta Party leader Greg Clark speaks to reporters outside the legislature on Thursday, Aug. 10, 2017.
Former Alberta Party leader Greg Clark speaks to reporters outside the legislature on Thursday, Aug. 10, 2017. Morris Gamblin, Global News

Greg Clark stepped down as Alberta Party leader on Wednesday, triggering a leadership race, according to an official statement released by the party on Friday.

“I have made a decision on what I believe is the best path forward for the party and most importantly for the province,” Clark said in the statement.

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“We must jumpstart the Alberta Party by selling memberships, raising money and raising our profile by debating different visions for the future of our province,” he said.

“To do that, I must step down as leader to trigger a leadership contest.”

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Clark, a Calgarian, is one of only two Alberta Party MLAs with a seat in the legislature — something he said he’s committed to maintaining.

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“I want you to know I am committed to running in 2019 as MLA in Calgary-Elbow. I will continue to do my work in my constituency and in the legislature, holding the government accountable and proposing better ideas.”

Clark had been the only Alberta Party member in the legislature until last month when Karen McPherson — the MLA for Calgary-Mackay-Nosehill — announced she was joining the party. Previously, McPherson had left the NDP government to sit as an independent.

Clark said he hasn’t ruled out the idea of running to return as the party’s leader, saying that decision “will be left for another day,” and will come after time spent with his family.

Party president Pat Cochrane thanked Clark for his action “to open the doors to the Alberta Party and to invite all Albertans to join us for a conversation about the future of our province.”

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“The Alberta Party would not be where it is today without Greg’s leadership and we thank him for having been an outstanding MLA and representative of our Party in the legislature,” Cochrane said.

Further details about the leadership race will be determined by the Provincial Board, the release said.

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