Calgary Conservative MP Michelle Rempel is considering a run for mayor
This bit of news, this maybe yes and maybe no, may cause Mayor Nenshi to lose some sleep.
Sources say Michelle Rempel, a Calgary Conservative MP and former Harper cabinet minister, is thinking about running for mayor of this city.
People are asking her to run.
More than a few are asking her to run and they have been asking for some time.
After this column, Rempel may get more calls and e-mails.
People are offering to raise money for her campaign and we’re not talking chump change.
Others are willing to work for her, and again it’s expected the numbers volunteering for the political trenches would be considerable.
Absolutely no decision would be made by Rempel until after the federal Conservatives pick a new leader May 27 and likely a Yes or No could be a while after that.
Rempel has public profile. She has access to campaign cash and organization.
If Rempel ran, she would no doubt stand for respecting the city taxpayer and definitely would stand up when attacked.
She has guts. She’s survived the idiots in Ottawa.
If she won, Rempel would be this city’s first woman mayor.
Now let’s not jump the gun.
Sources insist Rempel has not decided to run for mayor yet.
Neither Rempel nor anyone else has said she is even likely to enter the contest and go toe-to-toe with Nenshi in the October city election.
Right now, Rempel is just taking a look at it. Full stop.
Still, for those wanting another candidate in the race, it is a shot in the arm.
The news comes after this week’s Mainstreet/Postmedia poll showing Nenshi’s approval numbers sliding over the past four months and the mayor no longer unbeatable.
Rempel and Nenshi are not strangers.
It was back in January when Rempel took to Twitter about the staggering property tax hikes for business owners outside the downtown.
Nenshi said Rempel was “trying to make hay out of something she doesn’t understand.”
“It’s sort of helpful if she actually knows what she’s talking about.”
Nenshi then delivered the line we won’t forget.
“Apparently, math is challenging but hopefully she’ll figure that out.”
The fracas went on for awhile. At one point, Rempel pointed to the mayor’s comments.
“Wherein Nenshi mansplains to me and small business owners in Calgary that math is hard.”
Nenshi did not come out of it looking good.
Rempel got under his skin.
If Rempel runs for mayor, it would be pretty simple for her to make a case for change.
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The city is hurting.
Where the hell is all the money going?
Citizens are concerned about whether they’re getting value for all the tax increases of the recent past, no matter what Nenshi claims.
Nenshi came in with a lot of promise and Calgarians cut him more slack than any city politician in recent memory but the self-styled real fiscal conservative, the so-called outsider who would shake things up at city hall has fallen well short.
There was no Purple Revolution.
Knowing Rempel, she’ll keep to the issues, pushing for city services to be delivered in the most cost-effective way.
Dear reader, do you believe they are being delivered that way now? Thought so.
She’ll no doubt be painted by some as a right-wing nasty, even though she sees herself as a social libertarian and a fiscal conservative, like many Calgarians.
Finally Nenshi, who doesn’t hold to many positions, would be forced to take some.
When your columnist catches up with Rempel she’s first asked about the poll on Nenshi’s declining numbers and the upcoming city election.
“I think Calgarians just want their money to be respected, especially at a time of significant economic downturn,” says Rempel.
“I think this race will be focused on the ability of people who are running to show their priority to reduce the burden of taxes right now.”
“I certainly hope the turnout in this municipal election is high because the stakes are high for Calgarians.”
So Michelle, are you getting into this Calgary mayor’s race?
“As of today, I’m not running for mayor,” she says, with a smile.
As of today. With a smile. Exactly.
Source Calgary Sun