The Lockdowns Killed Kenney

Written By Daniel Bordman, Posted on May 21, 2022

The resignation of Jason Kenney may seem like a shock to some people after he survived the leadership review, but considering the very narrow margin he won by (51.4%), it was the only option that would prevent the NDP from returning to power.

Likely the only reason he won was that there was no real conservative option outside of him. Both Brain Jean and Danielle Smith have a history of Red Toryism. If someone like MLA Drew Barnes was actively seeking to run for leadership Kenney likely would have been blown out in the leadership review vote. 

Ultimately his cardinal sin was the lockdowns and over enforcement of the mandates. It is hard for a lot of conservatives and anti-lockdown advocates to look past the images of pastors being arrested and thrown in jail for trying to hold a service. The AHS lying about their numbers to fire healthcare workers didn’t help either.

In Kenney’s defence, Alberta was nowhere as crazy as Ontario or Quebec, but that is hardly an accomplishment. Kenney could have been Canada’s Ron DeSantis but didn’t have the courage to run the gauntlet of media and “experts” sneering to maintain the freedoms of everyday Albertans. 

Just like Erin O’Toole before him, Jason Kenney lost his job due to the betrayal of the base. He couldn’t defeat Trudeau’s Carbon Tax, there is slow movement on equalization and Alberta is at the same disadvantage federally as it was when he started. 

Yes, he was better than Notley for most but his failure to respect the promises to the base he ran on is another data point that dispels the myth of the mass appeal of the Red Tory

The lesson that should be learned inside Alberta and probably the Federal Conservative Party as well is that you can’t just throw away your base when it is politically convenient for you. To be a leader you need to stand on principles because without them you won’t have the moral authority to lead.

Daniel Bordman

Daniel is the host of political satire show Uninterrupted, runs multiple podcasts and has written for a variety of publications. Daniel is also the communications coordinator of the Canadian Antisemitism Education Foundation. You can find him on Twitter here. Uninterrupted on YouTube

2 responses to “The Lockdowns Killed Kenney”

  1. Mark Grainger says:

    The question is: On Sept 15/2021 when we had 8000 cases per day. What would have doing nothing looked like?
    The UCP government would have been blamed for every Covid death in Alberta. That’s what would have happened.
    JK has completed 88 % of his stated goals. So now we will get to see what the next leader can do?

  2. Lance Hodge says:

    What about equalization which a majority of Albertans voted to do away with in mock referendum….crickets.
    Must’ve wrote another stern letter is my guess.