By Mark Smith
Drayton Valley-Devon constituency
On May 17, 2017 a historic Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed between the Progressive Conservative party and the Wildrose party that would, upon approval of both memberships, create a United Conservative Party.
Two five-person teams representing the two parties have met over the past eight weeks to talk about the viability of bringing Conservatives together in one new Conservative party. As in any negotiation there was give and take in the production of the MOU. This first step has now been successfully completed and it will now be up to the membership of both parties to weigh the pros and cons of this Memorandum of Understanding to see if it is satisfactory to both parties. This will not be an easy process and the devil is always in the details.
The next step will be for both parties to review the MOU through a series of local town hall meetings in constituencies across the province. Each party will review the MOU in their respective town halls and the membership of both parties will be able to ask questions and consider the pros and cons of uniting.
Editor’s note: The Pipestone Flyer contacted the Drayton Valley Devon Wildrose board of directors to find out when and where the local town hall will be. See next issue.
In July, membership of both parties will vote on ratification of the agreement. The Wildrose membership, due to their constitution, will need to vote by a 75 per cent margin for ratification while the PC Party will only need a 50 per cent + 1 vote.
Should both parties agree to the MOU a special general meeting will be called to work on the unification of both parties and to ratify a common constitution and set of policies moving forward.
The upcoming vote on the MOU will be both historic and important setting the course of Alberta politics for generations to come.
Mark Smith is the Wildrose MLA for the Drayton Valley-Devon constituency, including much of the County of Wetaskiwin. He can be reached by phone 780-542-3355 toll free 1-800-542-7307, Drayton Valley – Devon constituency office Box 7272 Drayton Valley, AB, T7A 1S5, email firstname.lastname@example.org.