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Author Topic: Raj Pannu to step down as Alberta NDP leader
pink
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posted 13 July 2004 11:18 AM      Profile for pink     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 

[ 08 June 2007: Message edited by: pink ]


From: Edmonton | Registered: Jul 2003  |  IP: Logged
Rich L
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posted 13 July 2004 11:33 AM      Profile for Rich L     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Here's a CBC link to the story:

ND leader expected to step down

Edmonton - Raj Pannu is expected to announce this morning that he is stepping down as leader of the New Democrats.

Pannu and the only other ND MLA, Brian Mason, are making a "major announcement" Tuesday.


From: Winnipeg | Registered: Jan 2004  |  IP: Logged
Jesse Hoffman
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posted 13 July 2004 11:43 AM      Profile for Jesse Hoffman     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Aww I always really really liked Raj. He's one of my favourite politicians. At least he'll stay on as an MLA though.

I've been very impressed with what I've seen of Brian Mason.

[ 13 July 2004: Message edited by: Jesse Hoffman ]


From: Peterborough, Ontario | Registered: Jan 2004  |  IP: Logged
Screaming Lord Byron
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posted 13 July 2004 11:44 AM      Profile for Screaming Lord Byron     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
This has been expected for some time. Hopefully Brian will be firmly ensconced by the election.
From: Calgary | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
Lou Arab
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posted 13 July 2004 06:00 PM      Profile for Lou Arab   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:

Pannu steps aside as Leader of the New Democrat Opposition


Brian Mason to immediately assume leadership responsibilities


EDMONTON – Citing the party’s good health and his confidence that caucus colleague Brian Mason is ready to carry the party forward, Raj Pannu announced today that he is resigning as Leader of the New Democrat Opposition in the Alberta Legislature and of the Alberta New Democrats.

Pannu also made it clear that he will again run in the riding of Edmonton-Strathcona during the next election. He noted that he was nominated several months ago, and that a team of volunteers is already preparing for the coming campaign.

Pannu told reporters that he has accomplished his goals as leader, including raising the New Demcorats’ profile and leading the charge against health privatization, cuts to seniors programs and classroom conditions.

He also expressed excitement about Brian Mason leading the New Democrats into the next election.

“Brian has proven himself to be a tough and committed defender of Albertans’ interests. His performance both inside and outside the Legislature has shown time and time again that he has what it takes to challenge the Tories and go toe-to-toe with the Premier.”

Mason will take over as interim leader effective immediately and will stand for election as leader at the next convention of the Alberta New Democrats, set for September 18, 2004.

Pannu assumed leadership of the New Democrat Opposition in February, 2000.

-30-


[ 13 July 2004: Message edited by: Lou Arab ]


From: Edmonton | Registered: Jul 2001  |  IP: Logged
Maxx
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posted 14 July 2004 07:37 PM      Profile for Maxx     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
There's NDP in Alberta???
From: Don't blame me... I voted Liberal. | Registered: Jan 2004  |  IP: Logged
clearview
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posted 14 July 2004 07:40 PM      Profile for clearview     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Maxx:
There's NDP in Alberta???

Oh yeah, they even have a seat or two in the legislature.


From: Toronto | Registered: Nov 2003  |  IP: Logged
Steve_Shutt
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posted 14 July 2004 08:00 PM      Profile for Steve_Shutt     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
As large as any provincial caucus west of Saskatchewan.
From: coming in off the left wing | Registered: Jul 2002  |  IP: Logged
Guêpe
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posted 14 July 2004 08:13 PM      Profile for Guêpe   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
A couple questions...

1) Why was this expected?

2) What kind of growth can be expected from a new leader?


From: Ottawa | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
Marc
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posted 14 July 2004 09:12 PM      Profile for Marc     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
This was expected because Mr. Pannu is aging, very gracefully, but is still getting older. He is, despite his incredible energy, over 70 years old and being ND leader in Alberta is an extremely time-consuming job. I am guessing Raj wants just a little more time for his family and his self...his wife has always been very supportive but, at some point, he needed to stop the 60-70 hour weeks.

Brian Mason is a bull-dog. He shreds the Tories daily and really knows how to get under Ralphie's skin. He is very capable and knows how to communicate with young and old...plus he connects with the working class.


From: Calgary, AB | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
Marc
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posted 14 July 2004 09:40 PM      Profile for Marc     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Guêpe...your second question is a tough one.

The AND's have been growing since the last provincial election but it is hard to guess how much further a new leader will push them. I have complete faith in Mason's ability as leader but it is hard...remember this is Alberta...the sky is not the limit for the NDP here.


From: Calgary, AB | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
Vansterdam Kid
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posted 15 July 2004 05:58 AM      Profile for Vansterdam Kid   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Steve_Shutt:
As large as any provincial caucus west of Saskatchewan.

*sigh* That will be changing soon enough
.

Seriously though any chance the Alberta ND's can replace the Alberta Liberals as the Official opposition -- any thoughts on this? Also two questions one why are they known as the ND's and two how would you charachterize Liberal leader, Kevin Taft, ideologically at least?


From: bleh.... | Registered: Apr 2004  |  IP: Logged
LukeVanc
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posted 15 July 2004 06:13 AM      Profile for LukeVanc     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:

He is, despite his incredible energy, over 70 years old and being ND leader in Alberta is an extremely time-consuming job.

If someone can live past age 70 while working as leader of the Alberta New Democrats, that in and of itself is quite the feat.

It sounds like Raj has done a good job and hopefully Brian Mason will be able to win more seats for the NDP, perhaps even get the Tories into minority status.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
Gir Draxon
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posted 15 July 2004 10:15 AM      Profile for Gir Draxon     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Alberta NDP turns to new leader for resurgence

quote:
They were pretty tough words from a man leading a tiny caucus of two with no money in the bank against 73 Tories with a multimillion-dollar election war chest.

Well I think that there is something that can be done about that.

quote:
Mr. Mason, an energetic, plain-speaking Everyman from Edmonton-Highlands, said the party will make gains by emphasizing practical solutions to problems rather than getting caught up in traditional left-wing/right-wing ideology

I like the sound of this a lot. There may be no room for so-called champagne socialists here in Alberta, but an average guy talking common sense about practical issues can go far. If Brian Mason wins the leadership this September, then I will fully support the NDP in the next election.

From: Arkham Asylum | Registered: Feb 2003  |  IP: Logged
beibhnn
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posted 15 July 2004 10:49 AM      Profile for beibhnn     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
There will always be room for champagne socialists in Alberta, just not a lot of rooms. It will be a small room with big enough for a wine and cheese fundraiser in Edmonton.

Why now the NDs instead of the Alberta NDP? Years ago, right around the time that the ANDs switched their party colours from orange to Pantone 246 (a purplish colour... please don't ask why beacuse there is no reasonable answer), the party started calling itself the Alberta NDs. This was in part a reaction to quell the number of references to the NDP Party. The two party references were repetitive and annoying, and as all insiders know, the NDP is not the party party.

Kevin Taft is a New Democrat for the most part in his ideology, except he's an opportunist which makes him a Liberal. He investigated running as an ND in the previous election, decided he would do better running as a Liberal and then did so, beating out a babble poster who was the valiant ND candidate. With Taft running the broken-down-woe-is-us-we-bankrupted-ourselves-for-nothing Liberal caucus of 7 (are Ken and Debby back now? otherwise 5), the Liberals have taken a decided turn left.

As to the Liberals electoral prospects, last I heard they hadn't made much of a dent in their previous election debt from four years ago and were having trouble recruiting candidates. But someone who is more connected to the Alberta political scene would be better able to assess their chances.


From: in exile | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
Screaming Lord Byron
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posted 15 July 2004 10:53 AM      Profile for Screaming Lord Byron     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Wasn't Taft a PC member at one point? I seem to recall something on that.
From: Calgary | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
BleedingHeart
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posted 15 July 2004 10:54 AM      Profile for BleedingHeart   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
It sounds like Raj has done a good job and hopefully Brian Mason will be able to win more seats for the NDP, perhaps even get the Tories into minority status.


I hope so too but then again I still believe in the Easter bunny.


From: Kickin' and a gougin' in the mud and the blood and the beer | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
beibhnn
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posted 15 July 2004 11:00 AM      Profile for beibhnn     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Wasn't Taft a PC member at one point

I don't know if he had a membership, but he was a senior bureaucrat for the Tory administration. He then wrote a book denouncing the Tories and became the flavour of the week amongst the relative left. Many speaking engagements later, he ran as a candidate and won.


From: in exile | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
Sine Ziegler
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posted 15 July 2004 08:46 PM      Profile for Sine Ziegler     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Wasn't Taft a PC member at one point? I seem to recall something on that.

Naww that was Nancy McBeth.


From: Calgary | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
Screaming Lord Byron
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posted 16 July 2004 10:36 AM      Profile for Screaming Lord Byron     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Sine Ziegler:

Naww that was Nancy McBeth.


Well, of course she was, but I seem to remember something about Taft. Can't recall, anyhow.


From: Calgary | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
MacD
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posted 16 July 2004 11:55 AM      Profile for MacD     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by beibhnn:
Kevin Taft is a New Democrat for the most part in his ideology, except he's an opportunist which makes him a Liberal. He investigated running as an ND in the previous election, decided he would do better running as a Liberal and then did so, beating out a babble poster who was the valiant ND candidate. With Taft running the broken-down-woe-is-us-we-bankrupted-ourselves-for-nothing Liberal caucus of 7 (are Ken and Debby back now? otherwise 5), the Liberals have taken a decided turn left.

This is the problem with the Liberals: they are the party of opportunists and don't actually stand for anything. How can a leftie like Taft lead the same party as a Red Tory like Nancy Macbeth or a right-winger like Laurence Decore? The "big tent" concept is a good electoral strategy (except in Alberta) but it doesn't make for good governance. You would think that Taft is smart enough to realize that if he ever becomes premier, he's not going to be able to accomplish much when his caucus contains members from all parts of the tent...unless, it's a minority government that depends on the New Democrats to maintain it, or a New Democrat minority supported by the Liberals.


From: Redmonton, Alberta | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
pink
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posted 16 July 2004 12:24 PM      Profile for pink     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 

[ 08 June 2007: Message edited by: pink ]


From: Edmonton | Registered: Jul 2003  |  IP: Logged
spindoctor
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posted 16 July 2004 08:43 PM      Profile for spindoctor   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
*ahem*
Pam Barrett was not scrappy.

She was not a bulldog.

She was not a fighter.

She only led the NDP to its return to the legislature in a very nominal sense.

And I resent ALL assertions to the contrary.


From: Kingston, Jamaica.....oh alright....Kingston, Ontario | Registered: Jul 2001  |  IP: Logged
pink
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posted 16 July 2004 10:00 PM      Profile for pink     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 

[ 08 June 2007: Message edited by: pink ]


From: Edmonton | Registered: Jul 2003  |  IP: Logged
D.O.S
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posted 18 July 2004 07:43 PM      Profile for D.O.S     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
I liked Raj and still do! He always had a smile on his face and would be the first one to greet you. He was also very passionate about the students issues.

Brian Mason does not have the charisma and the populaist image that Raj had, however he is the master of gaining media attention and it is a better public speaker.

should be intersting, I have not made up my mind yet on who to support in the provincial election. ND or Liberal, Mason or Taft? I know I won't vote for King Ralph though!


From: edmonton | Registered: Jul 2004  |  IP: Logged
Gir Draxon
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posted 19 July 2004 10:38 AM      Profile for Gir Draxon     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by D.O.S:
[QB]
Brian Mason does not have the charisma and the populaist image that Raj had, however he is the master of gaining media attention and it is a better public speaker.

DOS doesn't like Mason. That's points for Mason in my books

But seriously, Mason strikes me as more populist than Pannu. Perhaps you could explain on what you base your assertions?


From: Arkham Asylum | Registered: Feb 2003  |  IP: Logged
Screaming Lord Byron
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posted 19 July 2004 10:46 AM      Profile for Screaming Lord Byron     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Gir Draxon:

DOS doesn't like Mason. That's points for Mason in my books

But seriously, Mason strikes me as more populist than Pannu. Perhaps you could explain on what you base your assertions?


Agreed. Brian is definitely the more populist of the two. DOS again proves his limitless political astuteness.


From: Calgary | Registered: Dec 2003  |  IP: Logged
vickyinottawa
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posted 19 July 2004 01:14 PM      Profile for vickyinottawa   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Gir Draxon:

If Brian Mason wins the leadership this September, then I will fully support the NDP in the next election.


From: lost in the supermarket | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
pink
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posted 19 July 2004 03:34 PM      Profile for pink     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 

[ 08 June 2007: Message edited by: pink ]


From: Edmonton | Registered: Jul 2003  |  IP: Logged
HellofaSandwich
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posted 19 July 2004 11:45 PM      Profile for HellofaSandwich   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
The Alberta Liberals got 276 000 votes in 2001.

The NDs got 81 000.

That's an awfully big gap to close. There will always be a huge chunk of Albertans who dislike Klein's conservatism yet don't submit to social democracy either. And that, in a nutshell, is why the Alberta Liberals will have more success in the next election than the New Democrats. I don't predict that the NDs will gain any more ground in terms of seats, but the best result they can hope for is to play spoiler to Liberal candidates in Edmonton with decent shots.


From: Edmonton | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged
HellofaSandwich
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posted 19 July 2004 11:57 PM      Profile for HellofaSandwich   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by pink:

Taft recently praised and endorsed Decore's legacy when Klein announced the province's debt free status. See it here.


Here's the important message that I see from that link:

"Since they were elected, the Conservative Government has received $127 billion in oil and gas revenues, on top of taxes, premiums and user fees. Albertans should be asking: given that wealth, why hasn’t the government accomplished more?

...

Let’s build Canada’s best education system. Let’s sustain and enhance public health care. Let’s make sure that average Albertans can enjoy some of the benefits of Alberta’s wealth, by delivering affordable utilities, auto insurance, and eliminating health care premiums."


From: Edmonton | Registered: May 2004  |  IP: Logged
Lou Arab
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posted 20 July 2004 11:56 AM      Profile for Lou Arab   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by HellofaSandwich:
The Alberta Liberals got 276 000 votes in 2001.

The NDs got 81 000.

That's an awfully big gap to close. There will always be a huge chunk of Albertans who dislike Klein's conservatism yet don't submit to social democracy either. And that, in a nutshell, is why the Alberta Liberals will have more success in the next election than the New Democrats. I don't predict that the NDs will gain any more ground in terms of seats, but the best result they can hope for is to play spoiler to Liberal candidates in Edmonton with decent shots.


Right, and voters never change their minds.

That's about the gap that we lost in the 1993 election.

From 1971 to 1986 the NDP got far more votes than the Liberals. And then the voters changed their minds.

In 1993, the Liberals elected 32 MLAs
In 1997, the Liberals went down to 17
In 2001, they went down again, this time to 7

They now have only three MLAs willing to run again.

In 2001 they ran a province wide campaign and spent over $1.5 million. In this coming election, they will be lucky to spend $300,000.

The Liberal membership has dropped, they now have fewer members than the NDs. Liberals have 4,000 and the NDs have 5,200.

In the last few years, the Elections Alberta statements filed by the parties have shown the NDP raising more money than the Liberals.

The NDP membership has risen by 25% in the last year.

The Liberals have one, part time paid staff person in their party office to answer the phones and do the books.

The NDs have a staff of six people in three offices across the province. Including (finally!) a provincial secretary for the first time since 1994.

Will the NDP do better than the Liberals in the next election? Only the voters can decide that. However, in terms of momentum and organization, the Liberals are moving downward. Taft slowed that momentum somewhat, but unless he has a billionaire uncle who can come to his rescue, he will be fighting to keep the three seats he has now.

[ 20 July 2004: Message edited by: Lou Arab ]


From: Edmonton | Registered: Jul 2001  |  IP: Logged

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