Chandler demands Tories compensate for campaign costs

"(The party) has an opportunity to give me $127,000 if I can provide evidence that’s how much I spent ... or they will be going to court."



Settle now or settle later at a much higher cost — that’s what ousted Calgary-Egmont Tory candidate Craig Chandler’s going to tell the Progressive Conservative Party of Alberta.


Chandler, the controversial candidate who had his nomination in the Calgary riding overturned after a meeting of PC party brass this weekend, will be penning a letter this week to the Tories asking them to pony up for his campaign expenses — or else.

“(The party) has an opportunity to give me $127,000 if I can provide evidence that’s how much I spent on my campaign, or they will be going to court,” Chandler told Metro.

He said democracy has run amok — that the PC party didn’t respect the will of voters.

In fact, Chandler thinks that democracy has backfired — he said the party underestimated his chances of winning.

“They didn’t expect me to win — that’s the only way to explain this,” said Chandler, adamant that party insiders knew his stand on a variety of issues.

Mount Royal College political analyst Duane Bratt said the problem lies within the PC party’s constitution and a lack of a reliable process to deal with candidates.

“I wouldn’t call it anti-democratic, I would call it… (the party) simply didn’t have a process and I would strongly recommend that the constitution get amended to include that process,” said Bratt.

Bratt warned that there would be political fallout from Chandler’s ouster and the MRC professor believes it’s not the last the PC party has heard from Craig Chandler.

“I don’t think we’ve heard the end of Craig Chandler — I expect the rest of his people will resign posts in the PC party and they will either join a new party such as the Alberta Alliance or Wild Rose Party, or he will run as an independent,” said Bratt.

A spokesperson from the Progressive Conservative Party of Alberta told Metro late yesterday that the party would not be reimbursing Chandler’s campaign expenditures.