MLA Richard Starke enters PC leadership race
The race for leadership of the Progressive Conservative Party of Alberta is heating up as more names are thrown into the hat, including a familiar face to Drumheller-Stettler residents. Richard Starke, currently MLA for Vermilion-Lloydminster has announced he will be running for the leadership of the party.
“I’ve been across our great province and have heard loud and clear, people are unhappy with how our province is being run, and they want change,” says Richard Starke, PC Leadership candidate. “Those conversations motivated me to run for the leadership. Like so many Albertans, I want to see Alberta become a place of hope, prosperity and opportunity once again.”
Starke was first elected in 2012, and during his tenure served as Minister of Tourism, Parks and Recreation and is currently the Progressive Conservative Caucus House Leader.
Starke was familiar to residents of Drumheller-Stettler, as Tourism Minister. He also served as a "Buddy MLA" while the Conservatives were in power, giving residents an ear to the government.
"Drumheller-Stettler was kind of a natural fit for me to work with, certainly agricultural, and when I became Tourism Minister, that is a huge part of what goes on in that part of the world," he said. "I felt very good about the advocacy I was involved with on behalf of the Town of Drumheller following the 2013 flooding. I was there days after the flood to see the work that had been done."
Prior to entering provincial politics, he was a Lloydminster City Councillor and was a member of the Lloydminster Regional Health Foundation.
With his entry into the race, there are now five running for the leadership, the most high profile candidate being former MP Jason Kenney, who is running on the message gaining leadership and then merging with the Wildrose Party. Also running are Calgary-Varsity MLA Donna Kennedy-Glans, Byron Nelson, and Town of Devon Councillor Michael Laveck. Calgary-North West MLA Sandra Jansen is expected to join the race.
Starke says he is a believer in the PC Party.
"I see that our party has a future," he said. "Once we have a leader selected in March 2017, I do not think it helps Alberta for us to spend the next two years leading up to an election, having votes, destroying parties, forming parties, writing policies and trying to select a another new leader. That is all time and energy that should be spent holding this government to account." The party will choose a new leader on March 18.
MLA Richard Starke… running for PC leadership