A year and a half ago, when I started my leadership bid, my campaign cofounders - Andrew Doherty and Laura Wiebe - and I made one promise to each other: if we could not find a better candidate, I would run.
For us, the most important thing was our Vision. As Alberta Liberals, we wanted a candidate who was more than a face for the Alberta Liberal Party. For like Rutherford and Sifton, any new leader must be willing to do more than speak for Calgary and Edmonton. A new leader should speak to the issues of Red Deer, Medicine Hat, Lethbridge and Fort Mac. A new leader needed to speak to the problems of both rural and urban Alberta. Only by building a party that could contest each of the 87 ridings could we do that.
Like Nellie McClung, Laurie Blakeman and Kent Hehr, that leader needed to have the courage to speak for Albertans who didn't have a voice. For only in finding that Courage could we as a party attack the real economic, political and social concerns of the province.
Up until three weeks ago, I was the only Liberal who was willing to talk to those very real issues. Recently, that has changed.
After a number of conversations, another Alberta Liberal who shares my Team's vision has approached us. We have decided that only through partnership can Alberta have a pragmatic, evidence based political force that can accomplish the great number of challenges that are before us.
Conseqeuntly, I will put my aspirations to the side to help build my Party and my Province. For me, it has always been about the Vision. This path, while different, does not sacrifice the intent: creating a sustainable, evidence based party who will provide the most benefit to the most people without harming the interests of the Few or the Other.
Please join me on this new Adventure.
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