Innisfail-Sylvan Lake MLA Kerry Towle, who started out with the Wildrose Party originally, has opted to join the Progressive Conservative party.
Towle announced her decision on Monday. Another Wildrose MLA, Little Bow MLA Ian Donovan, also announced his move to the Tories that day as well.
“After a period of reflection and discussion with family, friends and constituents, I have come to the conclusion that Premier Jim Prentice is offering the leadership that Alberta needs right now. I have watched this Premier over the course of the last 10 weeks take decisive action that reflects the wishes of Albertans. I am proud to continue to stand up for Central Alberta as a member of the PC team,” said Towle.
Towle also reportedly said she made her decision after talking to her constituents, who liked the direction the new government was taking.
Also, Rimbey-Rocky Mountain House-Sundre MLA Joe Anglin left the Wildrose to sit as an independent last month.
Meanwhile, Towle’s political career began in June of 2011 when she won the candidacy for the Wildrose in Innisfail-Sylvan Lake after citing the need to improve health care, to give a voice to grassroots Albertans and to protect property rights for landowners.
On April 23rd, 2012, she became MLA for Innisfail-Sylvan Lake winning 46% of the vote and defeating the incumbent PC MLA Luke Ouellette.
Shortly after her win, Towle was appointed Seniors Critic by Wildrose leader Danielle Smith.
Her counterpart Donovan said, “In order to maintain my integrity, I feel I can best represent my constituents as a member of Premier Jim Prentice’s team.
“I have therefore made the difficult decision to join the PC caucus effective immediately. Over the past few months, it has been increasingly difficult to follow the direction of the Wildrose caucus. I have also been impressed by the new management of this government and the Premier’s understanding of the needs of southern Alberta.”
Meanwhile, Prentice welcomed Towle and Donovan to his caucus.
“Kerry Towle and Ian Donovan are both hard-working and dedicated conservative MLAs who entered politics for the right reasons – they are passionate about improving the lives of Albertans,” he said. “Kerry and Ian are strong constituency representatives who will be effective members of the government caucus.”