UCP co-founder Brian Jean officially launches campaign to become party leader

Co-Founder of Alberta’s Regulatory Authority United Conservative Party officially kicked off its campaign to be the next leader, saying it was imperative the party got back on track by listening to the people and fighting for a better deal in the Confederation.

“Our management looks authoritative and arrogant – asking us to do one thing while they act as if the rules don’t apply to them, sitting around getting served Jameson whiskey on Sky Palace balcony,” Brian Jean told 150 cheering supporters Wednesday at a hotel in the west.

“Unnecessary wars have been chosen with the everyday Albertans who are at the heart of our small city and rural communities – our doctors, nurses and teachers.

“We run the risk that the anger of everyday Albertans will return us to the jarring anger of an NDP government.”

READ MORE: Who is running in the race for leadership at the Alberta UCP?

Jean said his foundation is based on keeping Alberta a proud province in the Confederation but working hard to get a better return on issues like balance payments.

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Click to play video: 'Brian Jean sworn in in the Alberta legislature'

Brian Jean sworn in in the Alberta legislature

Brian Jean sworn in in the Alberta legislature – April 7, 2022

Autonomy for Albertans has been a central theme of his campaign, Jean said, adding that the time to start is now.

“Let me imagine for a moment all of the improvements we can make to Canada over and above the balance fix,” he said.

“We can correct the imbalance in political representation. We can guarantee that no province can stop another from selling its goods and services to the rest of the world. We can fill the gap in healthcare funding. “

READ MORE: Jean called Kenney gently back to Ottawa, received a verbal slap in return

Jean, a former Conservative MP, left politics in 2018 but returned and won a vote in Fort McMurray-Lac La Biche in March.

He ran on a platform to oust Kenney as prime minister, saying his policies and government were alienating Albertans and clearing the way for the NDP’s victory in the 2023 provincial election.

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Kenney announced his resignation a month ago after winning just 51% of support in a party leadership review.

Jean is one of eight candidates who have announced that they will run for the leadership position.

Three people have left Kenney’s cabinet in recent days to run: Rebecca Schulz, Travis Toews and Rajan Sawhney.

There is also another former Wildrose leader, Danielle Smith.

UCP opponent Leela Aheer, who was removed from Kenney’s cabinet in 2021 after criticizing his response to the COVID-19 pandemic, is also seeking the top job, as is Independent Todd Loewen, who was voted out of Kenney’s caucus over a year ago for publicly calling on Kenney to quit.

The final candidate is Bill Rock, mayor of the village of Amisk.

On Wednesday night on Twitter, Calgary Conservative MP Michelle Rempel Garner said she was considering a run.

READ MORE: Rempel Garner says she’s considering a bid to become leader of UCP in Alberta

“I will base my decision on the conversations I have with the people I represent – ​​the Albertans,” she wrote.

Click to play video: 'Alberta UCP leadership candidates face huge fee to enter race'

Alberta UCP leadership candidates face huge fee to enter race

Alberta UCP leadership candidates face huge fee to enter race

© 2022 Canadian Press

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