Parties organize for provincial election | DrumhellerMail
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Court House evacuated Wednesday as police investigate suspicious package

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Do you think the provincial restrictions on social gatherings will be lifted for Christmas?

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Parties organize for provincial election

    While a date for the 2012 provincial election has not been set, parties in Alberta are jostling for a position for a potential vote this fall.      Of the three mainline parties, the Progressive Conservatives and the Liberals are looking for leaders, while Brian Mason looks like he will lead the NDP into the next election.
    Two relatively new, or new-look parties have jumped into the fray and are busy organizing.
    Danielle Smith has been at the helm of the Wildrose Alliance Party (now simply Wildrose Party) since October of 2009, and the party appears to have gained some traction, including in the Drumheller-Stettler riding.
    A Drumheller-Stettler Constituency association for the Wildrose is well established and so far three candidates have shown interest in seeking nomination to be the candidate for the area.
    Dave France is no stranger to politics in the area. The Stettler resident has run under the banner of the Alberta Alliance Party in the 2004 and 2007 elections. In 2008 he ran for the newly amalgamated Wildrose Alliance and placed third.
    Also in the running for the nomination for the area is Rick Strankman of Altario, although it took some shuffling for him to run.
    A meeting of the constituency association was held in Hanna on Sunday, July 17. At the meeting, Strankman resigned as president of the board in order to seek nomination to be the candidate in the next election.
    Chris Warwick is also completing his nomination forms.  He is a third generation Hanna resident and owns a hardware store. He is serving his third term on Hanna town council.        Alfred Erichsen of Botha was named the association's new president, and encourages anyone interested in  running to go to
 Nominations for a candidate for the Wildrose for Drumheller-Stettler opened July 15 and will remain open until August 5.   
    Another party on the horizon is the Alberta Party. While it is behind in its organizing compared to the Wildrose Alliance, it is gaining some interest among voters.
    On May 28 Glenn Taylor, Mayor of Hinton, was elected leader of the party. Prior to the election, he came through Drumheller and met with a small group interested in hearing what the party has to offer.
    Andrew Berdahl was privy to the meeting, and says there is a group in Drumheller who are interested in forming a constituency association, although there is no solid commitment.
    “We are still in the process of seeing if there is enough support to make it viable,” said Berdahl, adding so far there has been no one to stand up to run as a candidate.
    “First things first, you can’t run a candidate without a healthy constituency association,” said Berdahl.
    While they are gauging support for a constituency association, he says there is interest in the ideas of the party.
    "That is one of the strengths (the ideas) of the party provincially,” said Berdahl, “talking about political issues in ways that are not rooted in old ideologies.”
    Election Alberta will be conducting province-wide enumeration of electors from Friday, August 26 to Monday, September 19, and is actively recruiting enumerators.

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