Stephen Mandel part of effort to unite the political centre in Alberta
Representatives from Liberal and Alberta parties part of meeting in Red Deer next month
Members of the Liberal and Alberta parties are meeting in Red Deer next month to discuss uniting the centre, an effort involving former Edmonton mayor Stephen Mandel.
Thomas Lukaszuk, a former PC deputy premier, told Radio-Canada he will be there.
Alberta Party Leader Greg Clark and interim Liberal Leader David Swann said both their parties will send representatives to the Red Deer talks.
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Clark downplayed the significance of the meeting, saying he's been involved with many such discussions.
When asked if he was invited by Mandel, Clark would only say that they have spoken.
"But I have also talked to many other people who are constituency presidents, and others," Clark said. "So that's a good guess but you are going to have to see if you can talk to him directly."
While Swann has heard Mandel is involved, he hasn't talked to him. He has spoken to Lukaszuk, he said.
Radio-Canada was unable to reach Mandel for comment.
Some PCs looking for new home
The election of former Conservative MP and cabinet minister Jason Kenney as PC leader has prompted some party members to look for a new political home.
They believe Kenney's socially conservative views and his desire to unite with the Wildrose Party will take the PCs too far to the right.
Swann says the timing of the unite-the-centre talks isn't great because the Alberta Liberals will soon vote for a new leader
"It makes it difficult to be part of any discussions outside of the Liberal party until we get our leadership settled," he said.
Nolan Crouse, the only declared candidate in the race, dropped out Wednesday due to undisclosed private reasons.
CBC News has learned two more people are expected to declare their candidacy by Friday's 5 p.m. deadline: Kerry Cundal and David Khan. The party plans to announce the winner on June 4.
With files from Radio Canada's Laurent Pirot