'I think she's biased': Alan Hallman says PC party president should resign
Former Jason Kenney campaign operative was suspended from the party on Saturday
PC political operative Alan Hallman says his recent suspension from the party for inappropriate behaviour is part of an anti-Jason Kenney campaign, and the president of the Progressive Conservative Association of Alberta should resign.
"I think Katherine O'Neill should resign. She should resign right now, do the proper thing. I think she's biased. I think her judgement is questioned by her bias, in terms of this, and the people around her," said Hallman on CBC Calgary News at 6.
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His anger stems from a letter he says he received at 11 p.m. on Jan. 14 informing him his membership had been suspended for a year. The reason given was inappropriate comments on social media directed at two individuals.
"It was a minor vulgarity that I mentioned to one of the fellows that's on another campaign. I don't think he complained. There was also another minor vulgarity that I mentioned six weeks ago that they also brought up. I don't think that gentleman complained either," he said.
"So, it's basically the apparatus, the elites of the Progressive Conservative Association, that are monitoring my Twitter account and decided to take it upon themselves to suspend me over it."
Youth wing contradicts party
Hallman is no stranger to the upper echelons of the party himself. Over the course of 30-plus years he's managed several campaigns, including those of the late Ralph Klein, and worked in the premier's office.
He's also been known to toss around expletives on social media and to spar publicly with opponents.
On Monday, the story of his suspension took another turn when a portion of the PC youth wing executive named him as an honourary chair, much to the surprise of the other members of the PC Youth Association.
The decision sparked a public battle on social media between those who wanted Hallman as an honourary chair and those who said they weren't notified and the appointment was illegitimate.
'Coming after Kenney campaign'
In reference to some within the PC party and on the executive, Hallman said he has no doubt "they're coming after the Kenney campaign," which he worked on as a field organizer until his suspension.
"There is a small cadre of individuals that will do anything to ensure Jason Kenney does not win this leadership, and we are so far out front that they're starting to get nervous," he said.
Kenney has been running on a bid to unite the right, either by merging with the Wildrose or by luring supporters of that right-wing party back into the Tory fold.
For Hallman, some sort of unity is critical to steal the party back from what he calls "left-wing individuals."
"Those are very left wing individuals, and what I'm hoping is those people leave, they follow Sandra Jansen and leave," said Hallman, referring to the former PC leadership candidate who crossed the floor to the NDP.
Hallman is currently embroiled in a legal battle with Jansen's former campaign manager Stephen Carter.
CBC News reached out to Katherine O'Neill for comment but has not received a reply.
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With files from CBC Calgary News at 6