Randall, Stephen James
||Hon. Jim Prentice|
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| ||11 04 30
|I just visited this riding recently, talked with many people who said they were voting for Stephen randall, and they generally vote Conservative. It caught me by surprise, they also said that randall was more knowledgeable about the riding issues and that the Conservative candidate was just using narratives from the National campaign. look for an upset on Monday night here. i know some Conservatives would strongly disagree with me, but i would say to you that this is not some token Liberal candidate, he presents a real challenge.|
| ||11 04 29
|I work on a crew that drives through about 85% of this riding daily, and I can verify that there are a LOT more Liberal signs starting to show up on private property, just to get that over with.|
I also think a lot of small C Conservatives are intrigued by Dr. Stephen Randall, who has a wealth of policy experience and is familiar with the oil patch. Michelle Rempel has done her self no favours by not attending debates and seems to lack depth. I really think this riding depends on whether people are crazy enough to support the NDP candidate, who does not even live in Calgary.
| ||11 04 25
|I really, really don't know where Gainsburg is seeing all these Liberal signs. Anyone driving in any part of this riding will tell you that Rempel has signs on private property at a ratio of at least 10:1 over Liberal signs. Even the Greens have far more signs that the Liberals. I've seen MAYBE 10 Liberal signs on private property. I teach in this riding, but drive in from another riding and take different routes, so I have a pretty good idea of what's out there. This is an easy Conservative hold. Rempel has excellent feedback from the community as she has made substantial efforts at meeting a LOT of people at the door.|
| ||11 04 26
|I just attended the all candidates meeting at the Wildrose Church on Apr 25. Michelle Remple of the PCs was the weakest by far of the candidates..even Peggy Askin of the Marxist Leninist appeared to have more passion, conviction and knowledge of the issues..When this riding had Jim Prentice for MP, regardless of your political stripe, he was an asset to Parliment but as the lady next to me said with Michelle it is as if she was running for student council. No matter what the question was, Michelle nattered away about nothing ..canned party stuff or off topic completely or on and on about how she has met thousands of constituents door to door or how she believed in health care but was opposed to crime.Can't we have a serious candidate in Calgary North even though this riding always goes Conservative? this one appears way out of her depth...|
| ||11 04 24
|Um let's see. Tories get over 50% in this riding and the opposition is split between the other 3 parties (the Grits were 4th last time!)|
So, Grit gain, not in this universe.
Con over 50%, NDP distant second.
| ||11 04 25
|I've been through many neighbourhoods in my riding, including some of the very expensive ones (e.g. Rosemont, Charleswood, Rosedale), where there are far more Liberal lawn signs on private property than Conservative ones -- Rempel has nowhere near the support or credentials that Prentice did, and this is urban, not rural Alberta.|
| ||11 04 24
|Let's talk facts and not wishful thinking or cheap shots. As of April 23, 2011, the CPC is 39% to the Liberal 26% nationally according to Nanos daily polling. This difference widens sharply to 50% CPC support in Alberta to the distant 22% liberal. This is a consistent finding by Nanos and other polls with the Liberals dropping continuously. No amount of rhetoric will change the facts. Slagging the local CPC candidate and trying to buildup the local Liberal candidate will not change the outcome- a Conservative win in Calgary Centre North like everywhere else in Calgary. So there.|
| ||11 04 22
|This might just be the Alberta surprise. Provincially a good portion of this riding supported Dr. Swann as the Provincial Liberal leader to represtent them as there MLA in what is even Tory Alberta provincially. Dr. Swann recently ran a community engagement forum that was very well attended. The all candidates forums have also had good attendance.|
This is a politically live and aware riding that does not necessarily follow the Tory herd. This is a well educated riding for a large part, with many academic, musicians, artists and professionals who are engaged and can be relied upon to vote and tend to lean to the left of center.
The riding was happy to Federally support the ‘progressive’ conservative Jim Prentice for a long time. That does not mean they will flock to support the much farther right candidate Rempel who does not even live in the riding. From all accounts from my neighbors the Tory candidate was merely a voice box for the party talking points and had no idea about riding issues. She has also skipped a whole number of candidate forums. This will not sit her in good stead to be able to ride out Prentice's good will.
The Liberal candidate Randall is well known and was well received and well prepared for the community forums. I think it just might be the edge to surprise everyone and turn this Calgary riding to red.
The Green Party candidate MacIntosh seems to be the second best candidate as far as engaging with a lively riding is ocncerned. But I do not think it is enough. Even though green concerns are actually much bigger in Calgary then many people would believe and perhaps in this riding in particular.
I have heard nothing about the NDP candidate other than seems disorganized and unprepared.
So an active riding that has been ignored for a large part and negelected by the party holding the seat as they believe it is safe. But perhaps, just perhaps there is a surprise ‘upset’ lurking here.
| ||11 04 20
|The biased view would be that Rempel gave a good speech on April 13. As I said, the majority of it was a list of 30+ bullet points that were lifted straight off of the Conservative party website, likely based upon orders from the PMO, for which she got heckled from by the crowd. Some ‘independent voice’! Unfortunately for the citizens of Calgary Centre-North, that was the first and likely the last all-candidates meeting that Rempel will be attending, as she has no-showed all subsequent all-candidates meetings, including the one last night. She hasn't been elected yet, but already has the arrogant tory incumbent attitude of taking voters for granted and ignoring all-candidates debates (e.g. just like Anders/Kenney/Obhrai/Ablonczy). All Rempel proves is that it pays to be friends with the Prime Minister's wife.|
| ||11 04 19
|Could this be a Liberal break through, certainly Mr.Randall is well known and respected, will that be enough to get people to change their usual vote patterns is the great unknown. i think it's great for democracy that there finally , actually will be a race in Alberta and along with Edmonton-Strathcona, and , yes, Alberta is Conservative country but having a couple of opposition ridings and some other party representation is good for democracy. But, in the end it's up to the voters of Calgary-Centre-North to decide who the better candidate is and not just what party affiliation he or she is running with. I hope i made some good points.|
| ||11 04 17
||If There's a Chance|
|I also attended the all candidates meeting on April 13th. The Liberal candidate (Dr. Stephen Randall) gave the best speech, and the Green candidate (Heather Macintosh) sounded pretty good. The NDP candidate seemed disorganized. The Conservative candidate (Michelle Rempel) stuck to official talking points, and seemed nervous, inexperienced, and brittle. Apparently she does not live in the riding and refused to attend the next day's all candidates forum at the U of C because she ‘didn't like the moderator’. Rempel seems to be a poor choice for the Conservatives to run after the experienced, high-profile Environment Minister Jim Prentice.|
Sadly, I predict that the Conservatives will unfortunately win despite their poor candidate. I know many good folks voting on principle for the Green candidate, but even if Macintosh should win, she would have pretty much no influence on a Harper government. I also know many good folks voting strategically for the Liberal candidate, Dr. Randall. This will only result in splitting the anti-Tory vote, and allowing the Conservatives to win.
| ||11 04 17
|A prediction of a close liberal-conservative battle is curious if not delusional. This is a riding in Calgary which consistently goes blue. The margins of victory in Calgary for the blues is always by a landslide. This includes Calgary Centre North. The pro-Rempel signs outnumber the liberal signs by at least 10-1. More importantly, the liberal signs are on public land and the blue signs are on private property and public land. The perception of gainbourough of the meet and greet are biased. While the NDP candidate was not the most articulate, neither was the liberal the shining star that is implied. Rempel gave a solid speech that while a bit overtime was as well received by the partisn crowd as were the other candidates. A diverse riding with small and big C conservatives that will turn out election day and lock up the win for the new blue candidate.|
| ||11 04 15
|Along with Calgary East, my home riding of Calgary Centre-North should be the closest Calgary riding this election.|
Went to a local ‘meet-and-greet’ event on April 13 that featured the Liberal/Conservative/Green/NDP candidates for the riding. I was impressed by the turnout, as there were several hundred people there, including many young adults like myself.
Michelle Rempel, the 31 year old Conservative candidate gave a disastrous speech. Went over about 30 bullet point items that were obviously provided to her from the PMO, yet claims she will be an independent voice in parliament if elected... Some of the senior citizens in the crowd began heckling her when she kept droning on her bullet point list as mentioned how great of a record the Conservatives had with regards to the environment and health care. Campaign handouts were similar – big on Harper’s talking points (seemingly lifted straight off of the Conservative Party website with the usual buzz-words of ‘Ignatieff lead coalition’ and ‘low tax policy’ thrown in) and short on the specifics of why Rempel would make a good MP. Her campaign literature is awfully vague when it comes to Rempel’s accomplishments, for instance mentioning that she works at the U of C, but not being at all clear what exactly her role is. Rempel was the only candidate of the four to get heckled by the crowd. Baffling to me how Rempel got the Conservative nomination for a Calgary riding, although there was a rumour going around that her being a personal friend of Laureen Harper might have had something to do with it. Rempel had some supporters in attendance but she also garnered by far the most criticism of the four. She was also the only one out of these four candidates to skip out of an April 14th political debate at the U of C, as her campaign team said that the forum moderator (an elected vice-president of the Student’s Union) is biased, and still refused to show up even when the Student’s Union changed moderators.
Stephen Randall, the Liberal candidate had a very polished and articulate speech that was targeted towards an Alberta audience (rather than a one-size-fits all canned speech provided by the leader). Talked about the previous Liberal government's commitment to keeping our financial institutions strong in the 1990's and not giving in to deregulations so that we could be more like US banks. Talked about protecting the Canada Health Act (mentioning how a certain party leader has publicly said on many occasions that he wishes to abolish it). Talked about the oilsands and how the Liberal party policy is very similar to what Peter Lougheed advocated as Alberta premier. Talked about cap-and-trade, which was also the CPC policy in the last election. Randall was the only candidate that had his speech interrupted by applause (and this happened on multiple occasions). If I had to go by audience reaction at this event, Randall walked away the clear winner. Randall is a popular and highly accomplished U of C academic and was also a long time dean of one of the largest faculties at the U of C for many years, which should help him connect with young adults, even though he’s in his mid sixties.
Green candidate Heather MacIntosh seemed nice enough, but her speech, while solid, didn't seem all that memorable or inspiring.
NDP candidate Paul Vargis while gregarious and friendly, also gave a very poor speech. Very muddled, got lost, fumbled through his notes that were on loose leaf paper, and mentioned Jack Layton way too often (like someone who would just tow the party line and not stand out on their own). NDP certainly won't get the second most votes in Calgary Centre-North this time (as they have in the past two elections) with this new candidate.
I expect the Green Party and NDP voter support to collapse, given the much lower profile of Heather MacIntosh and Paul Vargis, relative to the Green candidate last election Eric Donovan (popular U of C physics professor) and previous NDP candidate John Chan (environmentalist and veteran who had run in many campaigns in the riding for the NDP at the federal and provincial levels). In the area, the Liberals have far more signs this election, as they are clearly dedicating far more resources to Calgary Centre-North this time around. There’s also (not surprisingly) a large number of Conservative signs also out and about. Only a few generic Green Party signs are visible, while NDP signs (which were somewhat plentiful when John Chan was running for them) have been completely absent this election – I haven’t seen a single one yet. I expect leftist voter support to shift in this election from the Greens/NDP to the Liberals in Calgary Centre-North, which should make this and interesting two-way race between the Liberals and Conservatives. It's obviously a long shot in Tory blue Calgary, but this looks to be the best chance in years for the Liberals to pick up a seat here in town.
| ||11 04 13
|If there was a riding that could possibly have a chance to un-blue, this is it. Unfortunately though, it will take a community coalition to do it. |
The Green and NDP have consistently done well in this riding capturing over 7,000 votes each in the last election. With John Chan moving on and the NDP replacement having far less name recognition, it appears that they may be allowing for the much stronger Randall to take some of that support.
I truly believe in strategic voting, especially in Calgary where so little voice is given to the split-majority which is continually represented by Conservatives in Ottawa. If the moderates, progressives, change-seekers, environmentalists, socialists and youth want a change in Calgary, this is where they could make it happen and all the while voting for the best candidate.
| ||11 04 08
|Stephen Randall is running for the Liberal Party of Canada. What we have with him is a 12 year dean of the Social Sciences at the University of Calgary running for the Liberals--a Stephen Randall. He is a named chair for an institute (I can't remember which), a leader at the University of Calgary, and has taught literally thousands of students. He has international renown, knows oil and foreign policy, and is heads and shoulders above the other parties. Judging from the signs going around he and the Conservative candidate are the only ones with signs up. The NDP and Greens (no signs anywhere in this campaign, and the Green candidate is vacationing in Uganda) seem to have ceded their ground and the Liberals seem to be ready to take second. Randall is a legit' candidate: he is articulate, has national attention, and has a full bunch of volunteers helping him out.|
If anything, the Greens and the NDP wont be turning out. The Liberals will at least take second place. The Conservatives are, of course, the favorite due to their hold on the province.
| ||11 04 07
|This is not municipal politics. It is shameless for the NDP, Liberals and Greens in this riding to continually align their possibility of winning with an unexpected victory in a past municipal election. I think these parties have missed the mark for what centre north residents are looking for.|
| ||11 04 04
|In an area of Calgary which has time and time again shown a willingness to vote across party lines I'm going to go out on a limb and suggest a major upset.|
represented provincially by Liberals, municipally by a former NDP MLA, this riding has regularly bucked the trend in terms of Calgary voting.
The NDP has placed second since the creation of the riding and has a respectably support base which with the right kind of campaign could deliver a big blow to the heartland of Harper's support.
Although it may be a long shot, it's one that could provide huge dividends for those who bet on an upset
| ||11 03 29
|Jim Prentice may be gone, but considering the results of the neighbouring ridings, I highly doubt this will make that much of a difference. They may lose a few points, but the Tories should still handidly win this.|
| ||11 03 23
|As an observer from Manitoba I have been following all the ridings that were supposed to be by-elections and were supposed to take place this spring. I truly believe Michelle Rempel will overwhelmingly sweep Calgary-Centre North. Not just because she's running as a Tory, but because she's young and energetic, she's an excellent Tory organizer/campaign manager (I've spoken to some friends in the Tory loop. I'm also told she's won the Maple Leaf Award at the last Conservative convention). She's a very capable Director at the University of Calgary, bringing them more than 250 million dollars a year through her excellent work. |
But on top of all of that, she has no opposition. The Liberals are running a clone of their leader, a grey haired professor from the University of Calgary. The NDP are running a no-name who ran for them federally in 2004.
There you have it folks, pay attention to Edmonton-Strathcona in Alberta.
| ||11 02 25
|Although Jim Prentice has left the riding it should remain conservative for time being , they have found a new candidate Michelle Rempel who seems good. there is no word of any big name candidates for opposition. so far nominated candidates include a new somewhat unknown green candidate and Stephen Randall for liberals . no sign that the ndp plans to target the riding or could i find out what John Chan was doing. of course things get more unpredictable if there is a by-election here if not its not likely opposition targets Calgary much during general election.|
| ||11 02 03
|While almost certainly a safe Tory win, this seat will get a little more interesting now that Prentice is gone. The disproportionally low Liberal place may have something to do with the fact that Prentice is seen as quite moderate and more ‘Grit-friendly’ than another candidate might be. It would take a profoundly weak Tory candidate and an extraordinary year for the Liberals to shift the seat, but it's maybe a bit more likely than other seats in the province.|
| ||10 11 10
|A by-election might be coming here soon and there are certainly pockets of support for non-CPC candidates. Unlikely to be enough to win but if voter turnout is especially low there could be a freak scenario where the Green or NDP candidates mount a decent challenge. And Alberta is fairly notorious for low turn-outs (far below national average for provincial and federal elections) so you never know.|
| ||10 02 21
|Any sort of Challenge in this seat would come from the NDP, but I would bet its a 20 000 or so vote margin. Not that Prentice hasnt lost to the NDP before (86 provincial election) but there should be no doubt that at least 26 of the 28 ridings in Alberta will be going CPC next time.|
| ||09 08 24
|Regardless of the ups and downs of national trends, Alberta continues to favour the Conservative Party with 60% or more. There is no perfect storm in sight to move any Calgary riding away from the “solidly Conservative column any time soon. |