Wednesday, November 24, 2004

The Writing on The Wall

In case of emergency, activate the bat signal.

In a surprise turn of events the liberals took Calgary Varsity. Our numbers were solid and no one, not even the media, the hacks or the pundits, saw it coming. All in all the liberals took 17 seats.

We lost 13.

A fourth term with a majority government that claims 3/4's of the seats is nothing to shake a stick at. It actually sounds like a success story any government would be proud of. But there is danger in complacency and this should not be considered a "victory", not for us.

The numbers tell a different story - an obvious right wing protest vote across the province. Albertans are not completely happy with us, loud and clear. In all ridings where a PC seat was lost, the right of center vote was split between us and the Alberta Alliance, by the same amount that would have been needed for a win over the liberal candidates. But it's not the liberals I am worried about.

Bat signal please.

This is a message from the voters of Alberta to our party and if we ignore it our party will die. As a party, we have our work cut out for us, with only 3-4 years to regain lost trust, confidence and support. The trick will be in balancing the needs of the voters with the needs of the party and our policy direction. How far right can we go in order to accommodate voters without losing more votes than we might possibly gain? And the Premier needs to clean house or go.

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