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Independent MLAs Congratulate CPC on Ejecting O'Toole

Independent Alberta MLAs Todd Loewen, Central Peace-Notley and Drew Barnes, Cypress-Medicine Hat, congratulated the CPC on removing O'Toole as party leader in a press release.

The release is as follows:

Thanks to caucus members' concerted and stalwart efforts, Erin O'Toole's reign as Conservative Party of Canada leader is finally coming to an end.

Alberta Independent MLAs Drew Barnes and Todd Loewen offered their congratulations on this tremendous accomplishment.

"We would like to congratulate CPC caucus members, including MPs and Senators, who stood up to O'Toole's desperate tactics," said Loewen.

"This truly demonstrates what elected officials can accomplish when they stand up for their constituents in the face of a leader who lies, flip-flops, and disregards the democratically expressed wishes of party membership," said Barnes.

O'Toole, who campaigned for leader on a promise to eliminate the federal carbon tax, flip-flopped on this pledge in his most recent election platform. "He did so despite his party's membership voting to reject such measures at the CPC's annual general meeting. He chose to put the advice of lobbyists and armchair strategists ahead of his own party's membership, and in the ensuing election, he managed to lose seats," said Loewen.

"The same thing is happening in Alberta. Premier Kenney has completely tuned out the conservative grassroots, especially when it comes to vaccine passports, vaccine mandates, government spending, and run-away corporate welfare," said Barnes.

"As a direct result, Kenney is one of the least popular Premiers in Canada, UCP fundraising has dried up, and longtime board members and volunteers are walking away. If an election were held today, Rachel Notley would be taking up residence in Kenney's Sky Palace tomorrow," said Barnes.

Loewen, who served as UCP caucus chair following the 2019 election, says UCP caucus members need to consider their options. "Like O'Toole, Kenney has used and misused every process and tactic to swing influence within the party and cling to power. But no leader is untouchable," said Loewen. "While the CPC and UCP have different policies regarding removing a leader, in a practical manner no leader can survive without the moral authority granted to him or her by their caucus."

"When this moral authority evaporates, a leader must step down for the good of the province. Both Premier Redford and Premier Stelmach faced pressure from caucus, recognized the writing was on the wall and left," said Loewen.

"UCP caucus members need to recognize that Kenney's time is up, said Barnes. "

Jason Kenney gave O'Toole his unequivocal endorsement in the CPC's leadership, and since then their policies have been in lockstep. There was no daylight between them. O'Toole's failure is Kenney's failure. It's time for the UCP caucus to do the right thing, and finish what the CPC caucus began," said Barnes.

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