EDMONTON - NDP Leader Rachel Notley launched her campaign today in Edmonton and in Calgary, under the banner "Leadership for What Matters".
Standing in front of the Legislature, Notley said, "After 44 years, Albertans are getting the wrong kind of leadership from the PCs."
"It's clear that Albertans feel let down by their government - it's time for new leadership."
Notley then travelled to Calgary, where the NDP is fighting strong campaigns across the city. Notley will be travelling across the province, talking to Albertans and campaigning to be Alberta's next Premier.
"We can choose to say that tomorrow is going to be better than yesterday," said Notley. "Albertans deserve better, and that's why I'm running to be Premier."
Notley's speech from her launch is below.
My friends, I’m Rachel Notley and I am running to be your Premier.
There are so many reasons I am in this race. Our health care…. Our children’s education. Ensuring full value and processing jobs from our resources. Fair tax reform.
But what connects them all?
For me, it’s a simple idea: its about choosing an Alberta where we all come together with the faith that tomorrow can be better than yesterday.
I want Albertans from all our regions, all interests, and all backgrounds to work with me for what we could be.
It’s time for that change.
After 44 years of boom and bust with no long-term plan.
After 44 years of unaccountability and reckless fiscal policies.
And now, working and middle income families are again told by Mr. Prentice to pay more and get less.
My fellow Albertans,
After, 44 years, we all know the people of Alberta are getting the wrong kind of leadership from the PCs…
…and that’s why it’s time to kick this government out and it’s time to elect a better one!
In today’s Alberta, I am offering new leadership for you and your family.
It’s time that your family, your health care, your children’s education, your jobs are the top priorities for the Government of Alberta...
That’s quite a change from what we’re getting now from the PCs and their latest budget.
They are promising to cut deeply in the health care and education services that you rely on, important services that you expect for your children in their formative years, and for your parents as they age.
They squandered our resource wealth when oil and gas prices were high, and they have worked harder for processing jobs in Texas than for those jobs here.
They will deepen the neglect of our natural environment, our rivers, our air and our lands, with more cutbacks and lax enforcement of standards and laws.
They give tax breaks to the most well-off in our province: banks and the largest, most profitable corporations. Tax breaks they refuse to end for ten more years, even as they squeeze family budgets.
And what could be considered more mean-spirited than Mr. Prentice’s decision to cut over $49 million from services for family and child protection, at a time of greater need for the support of the most vulnerable children in Alberta?
That is why they must be replaced. Now.
They want to make hard-working Albertans pay for THEIR mistakes with deep cutbacks and regressive taxes.
You have a clear choice, and together we can tell the PCs that working and middle-class families deserve better.
We can say “no” to neglected hospitals and longer wait times.
“No” to the PC policy of having zero new teachers for the 12,000 new students arriving next September.
And we can say “no” to the PC plan for 10 years of tax increases that are designed to place the greatest burden on working and middle class families.
That’s why they must be replaced. Now.
And there is another person applying to be premier in this election. His name is Jim Prentice.
Just like his predecessors, he’s telling you that the PCs that got us into this mess are the ones that will get us out.
Alberta doesn’t need and cannot afford another four years of this old, tired, and unaccountable PC government with its old, tired promises and its questionable ethics.
That’s why they must be replaced. Now.
We have a clear choice in this election. We can say “This is the new Alberta.”
We can say “This is the energetic, the young, the diverse and the forward-looking Alberta.”
We can say that we are proud of our accomplishments; proud of our strengths; proud of our people; and that we can be so much more than this old… tired… PC government.
We can choose a prosperous, diverse economy that helps families secure decent jobs, pay the bills and get ahead.
We can choose to value our resources fully and fairly, and add value and processing jobs here in Alberta, instead of Texas.
We can choose to strengthen and protect seniors’ care and public health care, so that people get the kind of care they actually need, when they need it.
We can choose to build schools where they’re needed, and reduce – not increase - class sizes so that every child gets the attention they deserve.
We can choose an open, accountable government that earns and keeps the public trust – and knows that the public trust isn’t for sale or barter in back room deals.
We can choose an equitable tax system, where everyone pays their fair share
You will hear more of our ideas on all these topics in the days to come.
Friends, this election is a chance for Albertans to hold this PC government accountable... and they sure need to be held accountable.
And this election is a chance for Albertans to choose a new government that is more -- a lot more -- like our province.
It’s a chance to choose new, energetic, positive, optimistic leadership – a government with new ideas to help you and your family.
It’s a chance for us to make things better for working and middle income families. It’s an opportunity to set our expectations for public life higher.
With our vote, we can choose to say that tomorrow is going to be better than yesterday.
That's what I'm offering in this election.
I can’t tell you how much I’m looking forward to this campaign.
Today, and tomorrow, we’re going to start building a better Alberta, together.