Jason Kenney to run for party leadership; pledges to ‘Unite Alberta’

unite albertaConservative MP from Calgary Midnapore, Jason Kenney announced this week he would run for the Progressive Conservative leadership seeking a mandate to unify the Tories and Wildrose.

On Thursday, he provided details of his plan, which calls for winning the PC leadership next March and then proposing immediate discussions with Wildrose about unification.

This is the complete statement from Jason Kenney sent to Canindia.com


I look back with deep gratitude on my nineteen years in Parliament, including my decade in the federal Cabinet. The federal Conservative Party is now beginning a process of renewal, made easier by the fantastic interim leadership of my friend, the Hon Rona Ambrose!

I have been encouraged by thousands of Conservatives to lead that renewal by pursuing the party leadership. I thank them all for their confidence in me.

However, after a great deal of reflection, I have come to the conclusion that I can more effectively serve this country that I love, and advance the conservative cause, in a different way.

Since the federal election in October, I have been blessed to be able to spend a lot more time here at home. And what I have heard in that time from fellow Albertans has moved me.

I have seen a proud man, an engineer in his 50s, break down in tears of shame and frustration because after a life of hard work, after developing patented new technologies in the energy industry, he has been unemployed for over a year and sees no light at the end of the tunnel.

I have met small business owners who, after twenty-five years of ups and downs, are throwing in the towel because every level of government seems to be staking the decks against them.

I have met young Albertans who did what everyone told them to do, got their degrees and took on debt, only to find it impossible to find a job at their skill level in a province with the highest level of unemployment in decades.jason kenney

I have met new Canadians who immigrated to Alberta because they were told it was the land of opportunity, only to burn through their savings before leaving for greener pastures.

Albertans I meet cannot believe that we have a government that is systematically destroying the Alberta advantage that made this province a magnet for risk takers and wealth creators.

Enough is enough. We must fight the ideological agenda of this accidental NDP government to limit the damage they do to our province now. And we must do everything within our power to eliminate the risk of a second NDP term, which would be catastrophic to the long-term future of Alberta.

After months of consultation, I have come to the conclusion that there is only one way to eliminate that risk. Only one way to ensure that we defeat the NDP in 2019, and get Alberta back on the right track.

And that is to unite Albertans around a common cause, around a united, principled, compassionate and diverse free-enterprise party. A party characterized by a sense of hope, optimism, and opportunity. A party focused on the concerns and struggles of ordinary Albertans. That means both the Progressive Conservative and Wildrose parties must put Alberta first.

We must focus on the future, not the past. On what unites us, not what divides us.

We must come together to form a single free-enterprise party. And we must do so before the next election. Because Alberta can’t wait.

Friends, that is why I have decided to seek the leadership of the Progressive Conservative Party of Alberta, seeking an explicit mandate to unite with the Wildrose Party, and all like-minded Albertans, so we can defeat the NDP and put this province back on the right track!

If you’re with me, sign up at www.jasonkenney.ca today — I’m counting on your support. Together we must restore Alberta as the economic engine of Canada. Together we must begin the renewal of Canada’s conservative movement right here in its heartland. Canada is counting on us to get this right.

With strong leadership that is aligned with the democratic will of ordinary Albertans, we can do this. Our province and many of her people are going through a time of adversity. But united, we will get Alberta back on the right track. United, we will restore this province as a beacon of freedom, hope and opportunity. And united we will emerge as in the words of Alberta’s motto – strong and free.

Join me at www.jasonkenney.ca — I look forward to seeing you on the campaign trail! “- CINEWS

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