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Alberta political turmoil spreads online

(Above: Laurel Gregory reports on how recent events involving the Tory Caucus have spread online)

EDMONTON – Two PC MLAs recently left the Caucus to sit as independents, and Premier Redford is being given a “work plan” by the party.

However, the highs and lows of the Alberta legislature are no longer kept inside the House. Now, more than ever, comments – good and bad – are being aired publicly, through social media.

“We’re getting – a much more, I think, uncensored sometimes – pieces of information from people right in the moment, right as stories are developing and as situations are changing,” says Justin Archer, managing director of Berlin Advertising and Public Relations.

Former Deputy Premier Thomas Lukaszuk- now minister of jobs, skills, training and labour – sent out a timely tweet Monday.

Friday night, Doug Griffiths – who used to be minister of municipal affairs, but is now minister of Service Alberta – sent out inspirational photos and messages about leadership.

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  • Another Alberta MLA resigns from PC Caucus

  • UPDATE: Premier Redford attends ‘no holds barred’ PC meeting

  • Progressive Conservatives working on “work plan”

  • Redford to pay back South Africa trip expenses

  • MLA Len Webber quits Tory caucus, slams Redford

Some are questioning if there’s more behind some Cabinet Ministers’ posts.

“It’s been really interesting you know, with the challenges the government Caucus has had over the last week or so to see the pare and thrust in real time,” said Archer.

“There’s been sort of a drawing back of the curtain, where we just get to see more of them or maybe more of their points of view.”

However, when asked about the tweets on Monday, Griffiths hurriedly replied, “I’ve tweeted pictures like that for months.”

In less than one week, the PC Caucus has seen two MLAs resign to sit as Independents.

Monday, Calgary-Varsity MLA and Cabinet Minister Donna Kennedy-Glans resigned membership in the PC Caucus.

READ MORE: Another Alberta MLA resigns from PC Caucus 

Last week, MLA Len Webber announced he was leaving caucus because he could no longer work with Premier Alison Redford.

READ MORE: Calgary MLA Len Webber quits Tory Caucus, slams Redford 

On Friday, Associate Minister of Family and Community Safety, Sandra Jansen, spoke about her former colleague Webber while appearing on a national TV show, saying “I would say right now if Len had such a problem with what he perceived as bullying he should perhaps reconsider his decision to step into federal politics.”

“Maybe he should go back to being an electrician.”

It didn’t take long for the controversy to erupt on 苏州纹眉学校.

The leader of the Wildrose Party brought up the comments during Question Period on Monday.

“The minister supposedly responsible for ending bullying made a personal attack against her former colleague,” said Danielle Smith.

Jansen was not in Question Period on Monday.

Deputy Premier Dave Hancock responded, saying “sometimes when a camera or a microphone is put in front of us, in the heat of the moment, we say things that come out the wrong way.”

RAW VIDEO: Mason asks about Redford’s ability to lead in QP 

However, Smith pointed out it wasn’t just one instance.

“The lack of discipline has been remarkable to see,” she said.

“When you’ve got a number of different MLAs fighting with each other, people commenting on Sandra Jansen’s quite frankly inappropriate, bullying remarks when it came to Len Webber, Thomas Lukaszuk and Cathy Olesen jumping to his defence…”

“This is not a party that is united – not by a long shot.”

Follow @Emily_Mertz

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