Thank you, Mr. Speaker. A veteran recently said to me: in my time in service I met some generals that I would not cross the street to say hello to, but I will salute every one of them out of respect for the rank they hold. Every party in this House would like their party leader to occupy the office of the Premier. Because of this, we must remember to respect the office even if we disagree with the party in government.
In this Legislative Assembly, where we are all equals, the Premier is the head of the House. When the head of any household invites a guest, common decency and good manners dictate that all members of the House greet invited guests with at least a minimum level of courtesy and decorum and do so in a dignified fashion. The Premier’s job is to build bridges with other jurisdictions, some of whom we may even disagree with. We hobble the Premier’s ability to build those bridges when a simple, positive introduction cannot be achieved. Last week, when the Premier had a guest come in from another province, that guest and the office that guest holds were not given the traditional warm welcome of this Assembly by some members. The Premier of Ontario was greeted by bad manners by some members of this House. Bad manners can reflect on the entire province and the office of Premier.
It is about respect for the democratic process. We don’t have to like the politics of every guest that comes into this House, but we have to give the Premier a chance to work with them for the betterment of Alberta. We routinely greet each other’s partisan guests warmly. We didn’t pick the Premier’s party; the voters did. That is part of the democratic process, and if we can’t have the core amount of respect for the democratic process, for what brings all of us here, maybe some of us should think about who we work for.
The Leader of the Official Opposition and some other members did not stand for the Premier of Ontario. The hon. members who cannot bring themselves to live up to the most minimum levels of respect and courtesy for democracy maybe – just maybe – ought to consider if this is really where they want to work.
On May 30, 2016, Ric McIver sought more decorum and respect for guests at Alberta's Legislature:
PC Caucus in the Legislature
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