Just days after the constituency board in Olds-Didsbury-Three Hills [ODT] voted 27 to 1 in favour of launching a leadership review for the Alberta Premier, a meeting of UCP constituency association presidents have agreed unanimously to join in.
“We just feel like there is a disconnect from voters and grassroots, we feel that there is actually a disconnect within caucus and cabinet,” Rob Smith, the president of the UCP ODT constituency association, told Global News. “In talking to people, mainly rural people, it’s fair to say we have no confidence in the premier.”
Western Standard broke the news that a virtual meeting of 32 CA presidents convened last week, agreeing to commence the process of passing a special resolution to initiate a leadership review no later than March 2022.
“Nearly all of them supported the motion for an early leadership review,” one of the sources said. “None of them explicitly spoke against it, and I believe that all of them are onboard right now.” The CA presidents remain anonymous. There are 87 electoral ridings in Alberta, meaning more than one-third of UCP CAs are part of this push to oust the Premier.
Another CA president told the Western Standard that “the individual chairing the meeting asked ‘Is there anyone opposed to an early leadership review prior to March 1?’ And nobody spoke up. It was unanimous.” Presidents feared the leadership review planned for the end of 2022 would be too late and sought to initiate proceedings earlier.
“Many CA presidents who were strongly opposed to an earlier review as recently as the early summer had come around to now back the motion,” said one of the presidents who spoke with the Western Standard.
Another said “A number of CAs on the call still support Premier Kenney, but were concerned that the push for a leadership review had reached a fever pitch and that it was becoming such a huge distraction from government, and that it was better to just get it over with. I wouldn’t know the breakdown [of those still supportive of the premier], because we didn’t get into that”.
This news comes on the heels of the announcement five days ago that three unnamed UCP MLAs reported that they have "no confidence" in Kenney's leadership.