Goertzen will act as interim leader of the P.C party until a new leader is chosen on October 30th and will assume the Premiership.
Today, Manitobans wake up to a new Premier, Kelvin Goertzen. The Minister of Health and Deputy Premier received the overwhelming support of the P.C caucus to act as the province 23rd Premier on an interim basis with the resignation of Brian Pallister.
Goertzen, elected in 2003, is one of the longest-serving members within the Manitoba Legislature and will not seek to make any major policy changes leading up to the October 30th P.C convention.
Goertzen has indicated he will not seek the role of leader of the party and is content with the role of interim leader. To date, three candidates have put their names forward with the hopes of becoming Manitoba’s 24th Premier. Health Minister, Heather Stefanson, Shannon Martin the MLA for McPhillips and current P.C backbencher and former Conservative MP and retired police officer Shelly Glover.
With Pallister out of the picture, the P.C MLA’s have been more vocal about issues surrounding Manitoba’s Indigenous people and talks of repealing Bill 64. It was no secret, Pallister ruled the party with an iron fist and imposed gag orders on party members from openly speaking with the media.
“We are pleased to know that Brian Pallister’s term as Premier of Manitoba has come to an end today. On behalf of Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak, I extend our appreciation to Mr. Pallister for resigning from his position. This is a positive step forward for the province.
It is in the best interests of Indigenous people that we never have to experience a Premier like Brian Pallister in our future and for the future generations to come.
We look forward to working with a Premier who is fully committed to truth and reconciliation and working with First Nations.” Said MKO Grand Chief, Garrison Settee
The swearing-in of Goertzen signals a new era for the province albeit a short one. The next Premier will have two years to convince Manitobans the P.C party is the party to lead the province post pandemic.