Like a Phoenix from the ashes, Danielle Smith is back and is ready to take the fight to Ottawa if she is elected as the new leader of the United Conservative Party and Premier of the Province.
In a campaign stop in North East Calgary Thursday night, Smith said that time and time again Ottawa has pushed Alberta around and now it's time for Alberta to stand firm and stand up against the attacks the federal government has been tossing Alberta's way.
"We said to the rest of the country that we have had enough, and we put an equalization measure on the ballot," Smith said. "The purpose of that (ballot measure) was to start constitutional talks where we could talk about changing the relationship with the rest of the country," the UCP leadership candidate added.
But what Alberta got in return was much worse than expected, "What was the federal government's response to that (ballot measure), they gave us Federal Environment Minister Steven Guilbeault. (Guilbeault) is probably the most anti-oil and gas environment minister."
Smith accuses Trudeau and Ottawa of driving a bus right into provincial affairs, " They told us how to manage daycare, they told us they want to get into our dental care, they told us they wanted to get into pharmacare, and they want to take over longterm care.
"Every time there is a national program, (Albertans) pay $1.15 for every dollar we get back," Smith stated. "They take our money and dribble it back to us with a bunch of conditions," Smith said. Adding, "Why do we continue to put up with it."
Smith admitted in the nights speech that her decision to cross the floor as Wildrose Leader to join Jim Prentice and the Governing PC's in 2014 was a mistake, and said that she understands that many albertans have moved on from the governing UCP since they formed government in 2019.
"I know there are some of you that have gone on to other political parties," Smith stated. "But I do say that this is worth the investment.
"I have been to the UCP AGM's and have seen former PC's and former Wildrose members together in a hospitality suite debating topics, so it has been a successful project," Smith added. "Don't give up on it though, the time for you to come back in is now."
Smith extended an olive branch to those who have left the party, "If we focus on liberty, If we focus on autonomy, and do some genuine effort at unity, I think that (the UCP) will be unbeatable."
She added that all shades of Conservatism is welcome in the UCP.
Smith was introduced by Calgary-Falconridge MLA Devinder Toor at tonights event. Along with Toor Former Calgary Flames Player Theo Fluery endorsed Smith.