Wildrose leader Brian Jean and MLA candidate for the Rimbey-Rocky Mountain House-Sundre riding Jason Nixon were warmly received last Tuesday when they stopped by the Kriz farm east of Rim- bey.
About 30 people, who appeared to be staunch Wildrose supporters, gathered inside a huge Quonset on the farm to listen to Jean, who climbed aboard a large tractor to deliver his speech.
The tractor certainly seemed a fitting stage for the 52-year-old leader who waxed eloquent about the importance of rural Alberta.
“I have worked on farms for money,” he said. “I do understand the challenges you face. The PCs have ignored rural Alberta for too long.”
Jean stressed that he did not believe in debt and was ready to take the PCs down.
“I do keep my word,” he said, as he addressed an audience who seemed to be made up of a mix of farmers, retired professionals and oil workers. “And one thing I can concentrate on is taking out the PC party.”
While he touted the Wildrose party line, he was quick to denounce former leader Danielle Smith for crossing the floor.
His emphatic statement that he was not and never would be a floor crosser received a round of applause.
“We were abandoned by this leader (Danielle Smith),” he said. “I am not a floor crosser and I would never be a floor crosser.”
Lowering taxes is high on the Wildrose’s list of priorities, he said.
“We trust you to spend your money better than we can.”
Cutting high paying administration jobs in health care and education to provide more efficient systems, balancing the budget, improved transparency and a greater focus on rural Alberta are all part of Wildrose’s plan for the province, said Jean.
Geri Lyons, who attended the event with her husband, Larry said she was hopeful for the future of the Wildrose party.
“We need new ideas, someone with a backbone to fight for a new way.”
Linda Christensen and her husband Bruce are also Wildrose party supporters who attended the event.
“We were not Danielle fans,” said Linda Christensen, but we really like these two fellows (Brian Jean and Jason Nixon). We need some opposition.”
“I was very angry when Jim Prentice said to look in the mirror. It (the huge debt) is not the people’s fault,” added Bruce.