United Conservative Party (UCP) Leader Jason Kenney announced his intention to immediately seek a seat in the legislature in the riding of Calgary–Lougheed, following MLA Dave Rodney’s pending retirement after being elected leader last weekend.
Kenney was elected as the first leader of the UCP Saturday night with 61.1% of the vote. Brian Jean followed with 31.5% of the vote and Doug Schweitzer received 7.3% of the vote.
“With the announcement of Dave’s retirement in Calgary–Lougheed, I am pleased to announce that I will be seeking the nomination for the United Conservative Party in Calgary-Lougheed in the coming by-election, said Kenney.
“In the days and weeks ahead I look forward to meeting the families of Calgary-Lougheed and sharing with them the United Conservative Party’s goal of a government that is not afraid to stand up for the best interests of Alberta whether that be here in Alberta, with the Trudeau Government in Ottawa, or anywhere else our province is under attack.
“I thank the residents of Calgary-Lougheed for giving me the privilege of serving as their MLA for the past thirteen years,” said UCP MLA Dave Rodney. “I’m confident that Jason will be an excellent representative for both the constituency and the province as a whole.
“On behalf of the United Conservative Party, I want to thank Dave for his years of service to your constituents, to the people of Alberta, and to the Conservative movement. We wish Dave the best in your future endeavours and, and perhaps we will see him make a third trip up Mount Everest,” concluded Kenney.
It’s common practice for a newly-elected party Leader to seek a seat in the Legislature as soon as possible. On July 8th, 2000, Stockwell Day was elected leader of the Canadian Alliance. MP Jim Hart stepped aside on July 17th, and Prime Minister Chretien announced a by-election on Aug. 5th, 2000. Day was elected as an MP on Sept. 11th, and became Parliament’s Leader of the Opposition. PC MPP Garfield Dunlop resigned his seat on July 22nd, 2015 following Patrick Brown’s election as PC leader. Premier Kathleen Wynne then called a by-election on Aug. 1st. Brown was elected MPP on Sept. 3rd, and joined Queen’s Park as Leader of the Opposition.