Danielle Smith says I'm "some blogger,"* and not in a nice way. Not in the way someone says, "you're some great friend," or "you're some terrific cook." Nope. Not that way. She's not going to be derailed by "some blogger" to whom a lowly staffer "miscommunicated" and she's not going to be drawn into talking about abortion.
Let's be clear. The lowly staffer, who happens to be the Wildrose Chief Administrative Officer, (C-level executive, as in CEO or CIO) someone who is in charge, someone who one would think knows their policy, answered a question of mine, a lowly blogger. I relayed his answer. "We [Wildrose] respect that Albertans view social issues differently, which is why Wildrose would immediately introduce legislation allowing citizens to put issues like abortion to a citizen initiated referendum. This open and democratic process allows Albertans to tell government what they believe is important." (emphasis added.)
Their current dilemma is not them responding to some blogger - it is them responding to THEMSELVES. They are responding to their own statement about their own policy. The staffer/Chief Administrative Officer did not miscommunicate. He was speaking from a high level, was cordial, concise and absolutely clear, and that is the Wildrose's problem, NOT that he miscommunicated.
And stop with the cop out that abortion is federal jurisdiction. No one asked Wildrose about the status of abortion in law. Health Care is funded provincially. I hope to heavens the Wildrose and its leader understands their role in the provision of health care. Right now, they seem not to. I asked if the party supported choice, what it would do to expand access to abortion in northern and rural areas and if it would continue to fund all medically necessary services including abortion. None of these questions takes Wildrose out of its jurisdiction. If elected, Wildrose will get to decide the what, the where, the how, the how much, and the how fast of health care. And given the leader's past statements that she favours defunding abortion, the questions are more than reasonable.
And by the way, Wildrose still hasn't answered my questions.
If, as Ms. Smith indicates in her bluster on TV, the Wildrose would not put abortion to referendum, I want to know what issues Wildrose would put to referendum. What "issues like abortion" will Wildrose decline to govern on? I want to know. Or is it the whole referendum policy that the Chief Administrative Officer miscommunicated? Is this a policy or not? Will it be immediately implemented or not?
This is so beyond abortion now. Will Wildrose leave issues like gay rights to referenda? The Wildrose seem to know they can't mess with human rights, yet, they are supporting a "conscience clause" which allows messing with human rights. (Read Liberal Kent Hehr's piece about so called conscience rights and what's wrong with them for a larger discussion.) And they are doing this at the same time as they are promising to dismantle the Alberta Human Rights Commission. Connect the dots.
I didn't open the can of worms, Ms. Smith. Your party did. Your people did. Now you are trying to put the lid back on, scapegoating staffers and insulting bloggers. It's all sounding very Republican to me. It's the fault of the "lamestream" media. It's liberals being all tricksy. It doesn't sound like new politics to me to hear a leader blame someone else and deflect answers to simple questions. This doesn't sound new to me at all. To me it's the same old same old. Another party that won't be transparent, that won't answer questions and that will say anything to get elected.
And let's be clear about one last thing. I am indeed "some blogger."
*addendum, this was heard by another and reported back to me. I don't have a citation for it, although I trust the source
The Abortion Monologues is available in print through the website and as an e-book at Smashwords.
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