In Alberta, Redford rewards crony with plum job

Danielle Smith’s Wildrose Party came close to ending the 41-year-old dynasty of the Progressive Conservative Party of Alberta partly because many voters appeared unhappy with what they saw as the arrogance and entitlement of the ruling party.

Still, Alison Redford led her PCs to a resounding win a week ago, winning another healthy majority and ensuring that the PCs of Alberta will be the longest-lived political dynasty ever in Canada’s history when Albertans next go to the polls in 2016.

And yet, Redford’s choice of her new chief staff suggests she may have missed Albertans’ frustration about Tory entitlement. Redford announced today that Farouk Adatia would be her new chief of staff

Adatia just ran and lost — to the Wildrose — for MLA in Calgary-Shaw. Adatia, a well-connected Calgary lawyer, is also known as one of Redford’s top fundraisers. His reward for his connections and for running and losing: A sweet job at the Premier’s side. Adatia’s salary? As much as $264,000 a year.

Related: What’s next for Stephen Carter who had been Redford’s chief of staff before the election? Carter played a key role in the upset campaign that got Naheed Nenshi elected as mayor of Calgary; he played a key role in the campaign that saw Redford come from well back to overcome several favourites in the race to succeed Ed Stelmach as PC leader; and he was at the centre of the action when Redford defied all pundits and pollsters to pull out a stunning majority victory.

From his twitter feed, it appears Carter is about to head out on the speaker’s circuit while writing a book.

4 thoughts on “In Alberta, Redford rewards crony with plum job”

  1. alberta is getting exactly what it asked for. there were definitely enough warning signs out there that Red-Ali was nothing more than a clone of McGuinty. RIP the Alberta that the rest of us looked up to and welcome to the socialist hell the rest of us have been waking up to for the last decade.

  2. Would you make the same comment if it was Smith appointing a losing candidate had she won?

  3. On “Tory entitlement” or any other kind of entitlement: Politicians and political observers on all sides of the political spectrum like to throw around the term cronyism, as if the reward of a new position were somehow illegitimate.

    I have a different take on it. If I’m looking for a good plumber, a good mechanic, a good doctor, especially a specialist, a good lawyer — you get the gist — whom do you think I get recommendations from? Usually, people I’m in regular contact with, who share more or less my POV. So of course I’m going to hire the services of people whose names I get from friends or friends of friends. IMO, we shouldn’t be so quick to judge such “hirings” as “cronyism”, with the negative implication the word carries.

    The PM, like other politicians, has been accused of the same cronyism, especially in making senate appointments. But he has also reached out beyond his own party, like John Manley, Gary Doer, Gordon Campbell, and just recently Jean Chretien.

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