Saturday, November 25, 2006

First Ballot Day!!

And, as Albertans trudge through the blowing snow and sub-minus-twenty temperatures to cast their votes, we present the last of the leadership candidates.

Mark Norris

  • Who He?: A former Tory rising star, his trek to the top hit a snag when Edmonton voters ungraciously dumped him out on his keister in the last provincial election. Since then, he's been working to get things back in order for his run at the party leadership.

  • Why Should Progressives Support Him?: He actually responded well, and classily, to his electoral defeat, putting his head down and getting back to work. His policies are somewhat vague, but there doesn't seem to be anything particularly loathesome in them (although see below). He seems like a nice guy. High praise indeed, I know...

  • Why Should We Not?: The above-mentioned policy vagueness shades over into actual weakness on issues like climate change (he wants to "promote Alberta's priorities" in that area, which is probably code for "not doing anything at all about climate change"). He bizarrely channels George W. Bush, of all people, on education issues, calling, verbatim, for a "No Child Left Behind" act. Weird...

  • Is He Likely To Pick Fights With Homeless People?: Probably not.

  • How are his chances?: He's a dark horse. If he gets to a second ballot, he make up support from people who don't like Ted Morton, and are leery about Jim Dinning's economic policies. Overall, he's not terribly likely to win, but it could happen.

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