Just forget the words and sing along

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Klein Steps Down

With all the fun of playing with my new server, I haven't mentioned yet the latest in Alberta politics.

Ralph Klein is finally retiring!

Of course, people have been pushing for him to set a date, seeing as to how "This will be Klein's last term" was pretty much the entire PC platform during the last provincial election. "Re-elect him one more time. Please?"

Anyway, October 2007 is when Klein steps down from public life. So, already, the people of Alberta are bracing for Klein's long good-bye...and comparisons are already being made towards Jean Chretien and his long good-bye.

With this announcement, the leadership campaign to replace Klein has finally begun. In fact, today Klein announced that, if any cabinet ministers want to run for the leadership, then they have to resign from their cabinet posts by June 1. This is to level the playing field, says Klein. So those cabinet ministers don't abuse their powers in their campaigning.

And, of course, the rumour still exists that Klein may actually be voted out by his own party at the bi-annual leadership review at the end of the month. A lot of these leadership hopefuls really are chomping at the bit *that* badly.

Klein's already said that he'll step down if he doesn't receive a "clear majority." That's one of those wonderfully vague terms in Canadian politics. In the early 1980s, former Prime Minister Joe Clark got a 66% approval rating at his leadership review, said it wasn't a clear majority, and stepped down. Hell, just a year ago, Bernard Landry of the PQ got 76%, and resigned, saying that 76% wasn't a clear majority. (To be fair, he said it wasn't a strong enough majority to lead Quebec to independence.)

In the past, Klein's always come out of the leadership review with a percentage in the high 90's. He's expected to come out with something similar again, so the old man can retire on his terms. But still, even Klein's starting to come across as worried.

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