Adjusting party policy part of political process

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  |  Posted: Wednesday, Dec 04, 2013 10:13 am

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Dear Editor,

In response to Mr. Bill Love’s letter of Nov. 13 “Wildrose Party shows it has no principles”.

His comments show that he doesn’t understand how policy development works in a political party. He is not alone, as most Albertans and Canadians share his ignorance. The truth is that up until a few of years ago, I was in that category.

All political parties regularly re-evaluate their policies, and this is done both federally and provincially, including the PCs. The process involves and is governed by the membership of the party. For the last two years, I have been involved in this process both provincially and federally and it is labourious.

When policies and/or amendments are brought forward at an AGM or convention, a great deal of discussion and debate takes place and then a vote is taken as to whether or not the policies should be adopted. In fact, a great deal of discussion and debate takes place amongst policy committee members months before they are ever brought forward for a vote at an AGM or convention. It only takes 50 per cent plus one vote to adopt a policy, it does not have to receive unanimous support. So a policy may not necessarily reflect the views of all party members, it may not even reflect the beliefs of the elected MLAs or MPs, or even the leader of the party for that matter. Passing a policy only requires that a majority of the members in attendance at the AGM or convention vote in favor of the policy.

I believe that we could all benefit from being better educated about our political system and the process. Perhaps the younger generation would become more interested and involved in the political process if they had a better understanding of how it works and how it impacts their lives.

Terry Beglinger

MD of Foothills


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