United Conservatives Commit to Sweeping Democratic Reforms

February 14, 2019

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UCP Plan for Stronger Democracy Includes Recall, Fixed Election Dates, Banning Big Money & Floor Crossings, Free Votes, Better Decorum, Senate Elections

EDMONTON, AB (February 14, 2019): To strengthen democracy and accountability in Alberta, a United Conservative government would make sweeping democratic reforms – including the adoption of an MLA recall law and a ban on big money in Alberta politics.

“Albertans want their MLAs to be accountable to them. That’s why a United Conservative government would introduce a Recall Act allowing voters to fire their MLA in between elections if they have lost the public’s trust,” Kenney said.

“The power to fire politicians through recall petitions exists in many other countries and most US states. We would model our recall law on one that has existed in British Columbia for three decades,” Kenney added. “Empowering citizens to hold their MLAs to account will strengthen Alberta democracy.”

Kenney also announced that a United Conservative government would finally get big money out of Alberta politics by imposing a $30,000 limit on how much a donor can contribute to political action committees (PACs), and closing the ‘AFL loophole’ by prohibiting groups affiliated with political parties from running PACs.

“The NDP promised to get big money out of politics. But they have done the opposite,” Kenney said. “Recently one union made a $270,000 contribution to a political advertising fund – the largest single political donation in Alberta history. And the Alberta Federation of Labour, which is a legal affiliate of the NDP, spent over $500,000 on political advertising last year.”

Kenney also committed a UCP government to:

  • Establishing a fixed election date
  • Allowing free votes for MLAs on everything not deemed a confidence vote or a key platform commitment
  • Stopping floor crossing by requiring that MLAs resign and seek a byelection before they can change parties
  • Improving decorum in the Legislature
  • Renewing the Alberta Senatorial Selection Act, and holding elections for Senatorial nominees in 2021
  • Amending the Taxpayer Protection Act to require a referendum before a carbon tax can be introduced in the future
  • Introduce the End Partisan Government Advertising Act, making it illegal for governments to advertise in the run up to an election and to use tax dollars at any time, for partisan ads

“This is a bold package of reforms that will strengthen Alberta democracy,” Kenney said. 

“Albertans sent a message in the last provincial election: they wanted more accountability and to clean up our politics. Instead we ended up with an NDP government that has brought the biggest money ever into Alberta politics, is campaigning on our tax dollars, betraying voters’ trust with floor crossings, lowering decorum in the Legislature, and forcing their MLAs to toe the party line on everything. In this election, it’s time for real change.”


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Strengthening Democracy

Citizens should be empowered to better hold their MLAs to account because Alberta’s democracy belongs to Albertans.

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