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LETTER: UCP supporters must avoid extremism in upcoming election

UCP members must be mindful in choosing next leader

I consider myself a "moderate" progressive-conservative UCP member, and I just can’t get my head around what is happening within this party. It appears the "extreme right" are making strides to take control.

Although Premier Jason Kenney may have had difficulty at times articulating what he was doing, the policies and direction he was taking for Alberta has proven to be right on. Throughout the pandemic, he did everything within reason to protect our health-care system and encouraged vaccinations; supported protests while denying blockades; provided incentives for industrial growth; provided fiscal assistance to farmers and ranchers, and financial support to small businesses; and kept lockdowns to a minimum. 

Today, this province is booming with jobs and diversity. Alberta has been fiscally responsible, public unions have been kept in line, Alberta gas taxes have been discontinued, and utility rates subsidized to help fight inflation. Alberta is in a good spot right now — we don’t need change.

Very few politicians survived the pandemic unscathed — half the people wanted fewer lockdowns and the other half more. This government hasn’t been perfect, but what are the alternatives?

I am appealing to all moderate members (even those who may be a bit upset), and to those who may now be leaning more to the right or even to the left, to come together so the UCP can live another day. If we fail to reunite, the UCP as we know it will be replaced by two new parties: an extreme-right conservative party and a weakened-moderate conservative-progressive party. There is no doubt that a split will result in an Alberta NDP government after the next election. We can determine our destiny by being smart, choosing mindfully, and choosing moderate — not extreme.

Ken McMorris, St. Albert