Wednesday, September 5, 2007

The Wildrose Party admits its registration drive is a bust

The latest edition of the Wildrose Weekly is out. It confirms the accuracy of the prediction I made in my August 28 post, namely, that the Wildrosers have not gathered the signatures necessary to register the party:

Action breeds success

Media attention is good, says president James, but by itself is worth little. "A party has to be more than a news story, and more than a private discussion group. A party is a network of effective volunteers in which everyone helps a little. No volunteers, no party. It's as simple as that."

August has ended finding us well short of the 7,000 signatures we need to register as a party. If this is not solved now it will become a serious problem.

Without provincial registration, we can do nothing. We can't issue tax receipts or identify our candidates on the ballot.
Sounds serious, but wait:
... we ... have a new plan. Now that we know exactly how much work is involved, and the fastest way to gather signatures, we can organize it so that nobody has to give it more than a couple hours.

For this plan to succeed, however, we need you -- personally -- to commit two hours over the next three weeks. Will you? If yes, we'll explain exactly how you can help the Wildrose Party get this done.

Please tell us by email ( if you think the Wildrose Party is worth two hours of your own time.
I wonder if this "new plan" will be any better than the comedy of errors the Wildrose brain trust has orchestrated to date. For those who haven't been following, I'll review some of the registration tactics that have come to light so far (after all, this stuff never gets old):
  • First, the Wildrosers tried to recruit Alberta Alliance members to their cause by emailing them a donation solicitation email, and asking that they join the Wildrose Party. That plan backfired when Alliance President Randy Thorsteinson got ahold of the email and informed the AA membership that the Wildrosers had gotten their email addresses from a confidential list that had been misappropriated by one or more of the former Alliance politicos whose names appeared on the email.
  • Then, on August 28, the Wildrose Party sent out an email to their own members asking them to start sneaking into apartment buildings and going door to door soliciting signatures using an aggressive, high pressure, sales script (while denying that this approach amounted to soliciting).
For the sake of the Wildrose members who answer this latest plea for help, I hope the "new plan" is more ethical and efficacious than either of these boneheaded approaches.

Just so you are aware, the last provincial party to successfully complete a registration petition was the Alberta Alliance in 2002. I understand that Randy Thorsteinson approached that task by hiring a marketing firm to go out and get the necessary signatures. He obtained over 10,000 signatures that way.

Perhaps the Wildrose Party Board should have done the same with its funds, rather than use them up putting the Executive Director and Operations Manager on the payroll.

Just a thought.