Town hall meetings chance to learn about proposed merger: Smith

Drayton-Devon MLA Mark Smith says July 22 vote is key

The local Wildrose MLA has cautioned those talking about the proposed “Unite the Right” movement that it is only a proposal at this point.

Drayton-Devon MLA Mark Smith said by phone June 14 the upcoming “Unite the Right” town hall meetings are an opportunity to learn about the proposal, but that it still comes down to members of the two parties approving it.

“That’s a democracy, isn’t it?” asked Smith.

The MLA noted that over the past two years the Wildrose Party has been open to a conversation about unification of their party with the Progressive Conservative Party.

After Jason Kenney became PC leader recently, Smith stated that conversation became possible. The two parties, working over the past couple of months, developed a memorandum of understanding that includes the principles that both parties agree would support and guide a merger.

The town hall meetings that are being held around Alberta will be an opportunity for not only members of the Wildrose and PC parties to examine and learn more about the MOU, but for the general public as well.

“They will be voting on what is in that MOU,” said Smith.

Town hall meetings will be held June 22 in Devon (7 p.m. at the Royal Canadian Legion Hall) and June 24 in Drayton (1 p.m. at the Royal Canadian Legion Hall).

The MLA himself said he is familiar with the MOU. “I’ve read it three or four times,” said Smith, and he advised every member or potential member of the Wildrose Party to read the MOU and make up their own minds.

“This is a decision at heart that has to be made by the members of the two parties,” said Smith. “At the end of the day we all get one vote.”

The vote itself will be held July 22 in Red Deer’s Radisson Hotel. Pre-registration is required. Smith noted an online option is being developed for those who can’t travel to Red Deer that day.

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