We are into the second week of the spring session of the Legislature and there are signs that it will be a somewhat acrimonious and tense legislative period.
Wildrose Party last week introduced legislation to allow constituents to recall their MLAs. The press statement by the party quoted Wildrose Drayton Valley-Devon MLA Mark Smith, who introduced the Bill 201 for the recall, as saying “Albertans are the boss, not MLAs. There needs to be the tools in place for Albertans to keep their MLAs accountable in between elections.”
The bill has already cleared first reading.
Mr. Jean might be contemplating a campaign before the end of the year to ensure the recall of enough number of MLAs to force an early general election, one that could put Wildrose in the driver’s seat by the time oil prices might start to reboundin about 18 months to two years.
Can it work?
It could, but at what cost?
Clearly, Mr. Jean and his team are in a rush to build on the dissatisfaction Bill 6 has caused among the rural population and would like to make things happen before the resentment over the issue disispates.
But an early general election will cost millions of dollars to the taxpayers and in the end, it may create more instability than it purports to settle.
One should not forget that the Progressive Conservatives are also working hard but silently to restore their position of power, which they lost in May 2015.
The widely circulated rumour is that the PCs have been telling the high level bureaucrats they have installed in the government machinery over the four decades they were in power to dig in their heels and wait for the return of the party to their governing position soon.
Are the Willdrose racing against time to ensure that they will be able to unseat the current government before PCs muster enough strength to return to power?
They could be, and because in the world of politics it is the ultimate goal to capture power, they are well within their rights to pursue strategies and tactics that will take them to the promised land.
But among all these political calculations, where do the people of the province stand?
Thankfully, there are signs that our politicians have been seemingly doing some thinking on creating jobs for the people of the province.
The Notley government has been announcing plans to diversify the economy and generate employment opportunities while Wildrose leader also announced their own proposals to do the same but rejecting completely any suggestion to support the government’s measures.
However, the problem is that the Wildrose’s proposals are almost utopian, as the implementation of the suggestions as described by the opposition will mean nothing less than politicial suicide for the NDP government.
Which party’s strategy is correct depends on who you ask.
So despite all the pain and suffering on the part of the unemployed, the needy, and the deprived, politics continue to dominate the agenda and a consensus on the way to move forward remains elusive.