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Alberta Votes 2004

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They said it

A selection of some of the memorable things that have been said on the campaign trail.

"And they were yipping about AISH payments. They didn't look severely handicapped to me. I'll tell you that for sure. Both had cigarettes dangling from their mouths, and cowboy hats."
- PC Leader Ralph Klein at a campaign rally

"The entire government is built around Ralph Klein. He's the one who basically rubber stamps everything that happens. So the problems that are here are his fault. If he's going to take credit for what's good, he has to take the blame for what's wrong."
- Alberta Alliance Leader Randy Thorsteinson on his party's "I blame Ralph" slogan

"You know, they say blame Ralph. Well, blame me. Blame me. Blame me and my team for eliminating the deficit and paying off the debt. Blame us for reorganizing health care and school boards."
- PC Leader Ralph Klein responds to the Alberta Alliance's 'I blame Ralph' slogan

"Are you proud of crumbling roads? Of overcrowded classrooms? Of food banks opening in rural towns? Now ask the Tories if this makes them proud. After all, they do seem pretty pleased with themselves. Very pleased, in fact."
- Liberal LeaderTaft, playing on the Conservative campaign slogan "Proud to be Albertan.

"People who believe that Mr. Klein is not the same guy he was 10 years ago, that he's out of touch and become arrogant and detached from the job, will be looking for an alternative that really does speak for them. Ralph Klein has changed. People used to say 'he listens, he cares.' But today, he doesn't listen and he doesn't care about Alberta families."
- NDP Leader Brian Mason launching his campaign

"Let's build an Alberta where optimism is high and taxes are low. Let's build an Alberta that stands up to Ottawa to protect its interests, but at the same time works hard for a strong and united Canada, where Alberta is recognized as a province that plays a major role."
- PC Leader Ralph Klein, launching the election campaign

"I'm not too concerned now. I like, fundamentally, the proposal."
- PC Leader Ralph Klein responding to Ottawa's equalization funding proposal a day after the campaign began

"Our coalition partners believe that post-secondary education in Alberta is in difficulty. We are confronting a looming crisis and there has been very little real debate about this impending crisis."
- Jeremy Mouat, history professor at Athabasca University

"My vision for health care is to have the best health-care system in Canada. How we achieve this is up to Albertans. My plan is to ask the people. What you want me to say is, 'I favour private health care.' Well, I don't know."
- PC Leader Ralph Klein, during the leaders debate

If after 11 years as premier of this province, Mr. Klein doesn't know whether health care should be delivered privately or publicly, it's too bad," he said.
- NDP Leader Brian Mason, during the leaders debate

"What really disappoints me about 33 years of Tory government is that the Tories, in that time, have had $135 billion in petroleum revenues go through the provincial treasury and it's virtually all gone."
- Liberal Leader Kevin Taft, during the debate

"I guess, as a politician, I can say we're going to spend billions and billions and billions of dollars here, there and everywhere else. But you have to remember what happens when the price of oil comes down."
- PC Leader Ralph Klein, on not making promises for post-secondary education



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