Candidate Todd Pawsey at the riding debate in Stettler on Sept. 18. (Kevin J Sabo photo)

UCP Drumheller – Stettler candidate Todd Pawsey disqualified

UCP members say in-fighting is handing next election to NDP on silver platter

Drumheller – Stettler UCP candidate Todd Pawsey says he was disqualified as a candidate because of 2013 Facebook posts.

Pawsey said it was “two shared links/memes, one about a bull who decided one morning he identified as a cow and the comment was about farm common sense and NDP social engineering. A post about the season opener of The Bachelor and about American reality TV where 24 gals are vying for one guy who was making out with the other 23 and the drama that creates. And a shared video blog of an intellectually challenged gal (easy on the eyes) that the comment made about celebrity and Internet status doesn’t make you an expert.”

But some UCP members in the Drumheller – Stettler riding are calling foul and expressing outrage on Facebook that the party disqualified Todd Pawsey just before voting was to start.

UCP member Lorna Lansard posted “but 2013?? And they wait until now? Not cool!”

Lansard went on to say that UCP members were sent an email about Pawsey but were given little information to help them form their own opinions so they could vote with confidence.

“There is nothing posted on the UCP Facebook page or on their website, direct questions remain unanswered.”

Lansard added that these actions could mean lower voter turn out.

“Whether the UCP is shooting themselves in the foot or the Stettler – Drumheller nominees are doing it for them, one thing is for certain, in-fighting is a sure fire way to hand the next provincial election over to the NDP on a silver platter.”

In other media reports, according to the Alberta UCP Party, the decision was made based on what they called Pawsey’s “inappropriate” social media posts.

In response, Pawsey made a long post on his Facebook saying, “I must regretfully inform you that the UCP Head Office has disqualified my candidacy in the 11th hour.. the day before polls were to open.”

Pawsey went on to say that earlier this week another campaign’s team made “below the belt” personal attacks against him. He added that “further complaints were lodged” from “inappropriate Facebook posts.”

Pawsey said that the board wouldn’t hear his appeal.

The UCP Party hasn’t responded to the Independent’s repeated requests for an interview.

The other two UCP candidates include Nate Horner and current MLA Rick Strankman.

Voting was on Sept. 27 in Provost and Coronation, on Sept. 28 in Stettler and Drumheller, and on Sept 29 in Oyen and Hanna.

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