Fildebrandt confirms Brian Jean helping Freedom Conservative Party
'Brian's got a lot of experience and he's been giving me advice about leadership'
The leader of the Freedom Conservative Party of Alberta (FCP) says former Wildrose Party leader Brian Jean has been giving him advice ahead of the province's spring election.
FCP Leader Derek Fildebrandt, the MLA for Strathmore-Brooks, confirmed to Radio-Canada on Friday that Jean is in conversation with the FCP.
"Brian's got a lot of experience and he's been giving me advice about leadership of the party, about things we can do for the coming election," Fildebrandt said. "He's been helping me to become a better leader, because I'm very new to the job."
Fildebrandt wouldn't confirm the nature of Jean's role, and didn't say that Jean could become the party's leader.
He added that their previously strained relationship has improved.
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"Our relationship was pretty testy, obviously for a while ... Brian and I have buried the hatchet. We see eye to eye on a lot," Fildbebrandt said.
News that Jean is giving the party advice came a day after a Calgary city councillor said the former Wildrose leader would be stepping back into politics in time for the spring election.
Jean has sidestepped those rumours.
Fildebrandt was asked Friday how it would be for him to give the leadership of the party he founded to someone else.
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He said he's just happy to have Jean involved with his party, and doesn't know how far the former Wildrose leader's involvement will go.
"But I'll tell you this," Fildebrandt said. "I've never aspired to lead. I've only just wanted to represent my constituents, to represent the people of Strathmore-Brooks and now Chestermere-Strathmore, to stand for the conservative values that I stand for, and to have a free vote.
"And as long as a leader gives me the right to speak freely, speak my mind, and to vote freely on every bill, I mean, I don't need to lead a party."
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With files from Audrey Neveu