Danielle Smith, leader of Alberta’s Wildrose Alliance Party and, for some, the great hope of Alberta small-c conservatives, has been keeping a rather low profile of late, ever since her communications guru, Stephen Carter, mocked Premier Ed Stelmach’s speaking cadence (in a Tweet, Carter suggested Stelmach has a hayseed accent; he later resigned). Now Smith is back and, in a speech to the Canadian Club of Calgary, made no bones about her climate change skepticism. “The science isn’t settled,” she said, according to the Calgary Herald’s Renata D’Aliesio. “I’m worried about us embarking on costly schemes to try to reduce our overall emissions rather than doing the obvious things that will come easier,” she said of UN climate change talks now ongoing in Copenhagen. Her political opponents have wasted no time in branding her a “climate change denier,” a tough category to find oneself in if you’re trying to look “moderate,” as Smith arguably must. Then again, perhaps she’s on to something—maybe Albertans are ready to embrace the contrarian view.
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