Voters in the Drayton-Devon constituency heard a report from their United Conservative Party Member of the Legislative Assembly Mar. 24, including his efforts to introduce an electoral recall bill.
Mark Smith, UCP, who represents most of the County of Wetaskiwin, spoke at Marci’s Bar and Grill in Devon as part of a regular report, membership drive and fundraising event.
He announced at the event he wants to remain as the UCP candidate for Drayton-Devon.
Smith announced he wants to run again in the next provincial election, scheduled for spring, 2019.
At the same time, he encouraged anyone who wants to challenge him for the UCP hat in Drayton-Devon to step forward. “Trust me, I’m a big boy,” said Smith. “You’re not going to hurt my feelings.”
Smith said, looking ahead to the next election, the year 2019 could be one of the most important years in Alberta political history.
“I think in the last three years we’ve learned politics matter,” he said.
Smith’s event also included comments by Official Opposition and UCP leader Jason Kenney. Last summer Smith was one of Kenney’s strongest supporters during the fledgling conservative party’s leadership race. The MLA said he went into the race with an open mind, asking candidates such as Kenney and Brian Jean questions.
Smith said he feels Kenney’s experience makes him the most important conservative politician in Canada right now and allows Kenney to tackles issues in a thoughtful, practical and effective way.
Smith also gave the audience a bit of a report on his work at the Legislature, which he said has been a mixed bag.
On the positive side, he recently had his private member’s bill approved, as all parties were in favour of it. The Missing Persons Act “…allows a police service to obtain a court order to access information when conducting a missing person’s investigation. In emergency circumstances, the police service may demand specified information.”
Smith said it was nice to see the legislature agree on something.
However, not everything has been that easy said Smith. He noted the UCP has argued for news laws like electoral recall, in essence calling a new election if an elected official breaks campaign promises, and property rights.
Smith pointed out becoming a member of a political party has big benefits. He said, in politics, for every membership sold the party in questions generally gets 10 votes in return.
He said buying memberships thus has direct results. “We can win a general election before a general election is even called,” said Smith.
Smith said as MLA he feels the government must be responsive to Albertans. “Government is about primarily assisting the people,” he said.
He said he wants his children and grandchildren to grow up in a province that encourages them to be self-reliant, well educated, confident and compassionate. Smith noted the government’s responsibility is to build a base that allows people to live that way.