Olds-Didsbury

Olds-Didsbury was a provincial electoral district in central Alberta, Canada, mandated to return a single member to the Legislative Assembly of Alberta using the first-past-the-post method of voting from 1963 to 1997.[1]

Olds-Didsbury
Alberta electoral district
Defunct provincial electoral district
LegislatureLegislative Assembly of Alberta
District created1961
District abolished1997
First contested1963
Last contested1993

It is noteworthy as the location of a famous by-election in 1982, when the separatist Western Canada Concept achieved the first and only electoral victory in the movement's history.

HistoryEdit

Members of the Legislative Assembly for Olds-Didsbury
Assembly Years Member Party
See Olds and Didsbury 1909–1963
15th 1963–1967 Robert Clark Social Credit
16th 1967–1971
17th 1971–1975
18th 1975–1979
19th 1979–1981
1981–1982 Vacant
1982 Gordon Kesler Western Canada Concept
20th 1982–1986 Stephen Stiles Progressive Conservative
21st 1986–1989 Roy Brassard
22nd 1989–1993
23rd 1993–1997
See Olds-Didsbury-Three Hills 1997–

The riding was created in 1963 when the Olds and Didsbury districts were merged. Incumbent MLA for Didsbury Robert Clark ran in the new riding for Social Credit, and was easily re-elected. He was appointed to cabinet by premier Ernest Manning in 1966 and re-appointed by Harry Strom.

In the 1971 election, when Peter Lougheed's Progressive Conservatives swept Social Credit out of power, Clark retained Olds-Didsbury by a wide margin. He then served as opposition leader while Social Credit leader Werner Schmidt had no seat in the legislature, and when Schmidt resigned after failing to improve the party's fortunes, Clark won the leadership of the party, continuing as opposition leader. As party leader he won the largest majority in the history of Olds-Didsbury in the 1979 election, but the party failed to make inroads elsewhere. He subsequently resigned as party leader and MLA.

The resulting by-election in Olds-Didsbury shocked the political establishment in Canada, as Gordon Kesler of the separatist Western Canada Concept cruised to a surprise victory, due to anger over the National Energy Program and the patriation of the Constitution of Canada under Pierre Trudeau.[2][3]

The premier called a snap election for later that year to ensure a quick showdown with Western Canada Concept. Kesler chose to run in Highwood, where he lived, and was defeated by a huge margin. This rendered him the shortest-serving MLA in Alberta history, counting from election to defeat.[4] The Progressive Conservatives also finally captured Olds-Didsbury, where Stephen Stiles nearly doubled previous Progressive Conservative results amid a surge in turnout.

Stiles served only one term as MLA. Progressive Conservative candidate Roy Brassard easily defended Olds-Didsbury for his party, serving three terms. Brassard was appointed to cabinet as Minister for Seniors under Lougheed in 1991, and retired upon the dissolution of the Legislature in 1997. At the same time, Olds-Didsbury was merged with the north part of Three Hills-Airdrie to form Olds-Didsbury-Three Hills.

Election ResultsEdit

Elections in the 1960sEdit

1963 Alberta general election
Party Candidate Votes %
Social Credit Robert Clark 3,950 66.95
Independent Movement Roger Lebeuf 1,550 26.27
New Democratic Eva Banta 400 6.78
Total valid votes 5,900 100.00
Rejected, spoiled, and declined 14
Eligible electors / Turnout 9,177 64.44
Social Credit pickup new district.
Source(s)
Heritage Community Foundation. "Election results for Olds-Didsbury". Retrieved April 30, 2018.
1967 Alberta general election
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Social Credit Robert Clark 4,052 65.22 -1.73
Liberal Stan Bell 1,129 18.17
Independent Conservative Chas. Purvis 547 8.80
New Democratic Eva Banta 485 7.81 +1.03
Total valid votes 6,213 100.00
Rejected, spoiled, and declined 19
Eligible electors / Turnout 8,988 69.34 +4.89
Social Credit hold Swing -9.95
Source(s)
Heritage Community Foundation. "Election results for Olds-Didsbury". Retrieved April 30, 2018.

Elections in the 1970sEdit

1971 Alberta general election
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Social Credit Robert Clark 4,346 59.62 -5.60
Progressive Conservative Rudolf Pedersen 2,578 35.36 +26.56
New Democratic William C. McCutcheon 366 5.02 -2.79
Total valid votes 7,290 100.00
Rejected, spoiled, and declined 32
Eligible electors / Turnout 9,275 78.94 +9.61
Social Credit hold Swing -16.08
Source(s)
Heritage Community Foundation. "Election results for Olds-Didsbury". Retrieved April 30, 2018.
1975 Alberta general election
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Social Credit Robert Clark 4,400 58.91 -0.71
Progressive Conservative Kenneth Amthor 2,860 38.29 +2.93
New Democratic Margaret Hinton 209 2.80 -2.22
Total valid votes 7,469 100.00
Rejected, spoiled, and declined 7
Eligible electors / Turnout 9,737 76.78 -2.16
Social Credit hold Swing -1.82
Source(s)
Heritage Community Foundation. "Election results for Olds-Didsbury". Retrieved April 30, 2018.
1979 Alberta general election
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Social Credit Robert Clark 6,399 70.16 +11.25
Progressive Conservative Bill Edgar 2,514 27.57 -10.73
New Democratic Gregory Hoffarth 152 1.67 -1.13
Liberal Stephen Shaw 55 0.60
Total valid votes 9,120 100.00
Rejected, spoiled, and declined 22
Eligible electors / Turnout 12,458 73.38 -3.40
Social Credit hold Swing +10.99
Source(s)
Heritage Community Foundation. "Election results for Olds-Didsbury". Retrieved April 30, 2018.

Elections in the 1980sEdit

Alberta provincial by-election, February 17, 1982
Upon the resignation of Robert Curtis Clark on November 30, 1981
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Western Canada Concept Gordon Kesler 4,015 42.20
Social Credit Lloyd Quantz 2,669 28.05 -42.11
Progressive Conservative Stephen Stiles 2,396 25.18 -2.38
New Democratic Myrna Jarboe 308 3.24 +1.57
Liberal George Leussink 126 1.32 +0.72
Independent Adilsha Shivji 9 0.09
Total valid votes 9,514 100.00
Rejected, spoiled, and declined 19
Eligible electors / Turnout 13,798 69.09 -4.29
Western Canada Concept gain from Social Credit Swing +42.16
Source(s)
Elections Alberta. "By-elections". Retrieved April 30, 2018.
1982 Alberta general election
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Progressive Conservative Stephen Stiles 5,096 46.99 +21.81
Independent Lloyd Quantz 2,755 25.40
Western Canada Concept Daryl M. Jaddock 2,714 25.03 -17.18
New Democratic Roy Agnew 233 2.15 -1.09
Independent John Buttrey 47 0.43
Total valid votes 10,845 100.00
Rejected, spoiled, and declined 18
Eligible electors / Turnout 14,296 75.99 +6.90
Progressive Conservative gain from Western Canada Concept Swing +19.49
Source(s)
Heritage Community Foundation. "Election results for Olds-Didsbury". Retrieved April 30, 2018.
1986 Alberta general election
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Progressive Conservative Roy Brassard 5,204 66.62 +19.63
Confederation of Regions Elmer Knutson 1,785 22.85
New Democratic Tom Monto 823 10.54 8.39
Total valid votes 7,812 100.00
Rejected, spoiled, and declined 30
Eligible electors / Turnout 14,322 54.75 -21.23
Progressive Conservative hold Swing -1.61
Source(s)
Heritage Community Foundation. "Election results for Olds-Didsbury". Retrieved April 30, 2018.
1989 Alberta general election
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Progressive Conservative Roy Brassard 4,960 60.25 -6.37
Social Credit Ray Young 1,249 15.17
Liberal Garfield Marks 1,182 14.36
New Democratic Tom Monto 842 10.23 -0.31
Total valid votes 8,233 100.00
Rejected, spoiled, and declined 32
Eligible electors / Turnout 14,612 56.56 +1.81
Progressive Conservative hold Swing -10.77
Source(s)
Heritage Community Foundation. "Election results for Olds-Didsbury". Retrieved April 30, 2018.

Elections in the 1990sEdit

1993 Alberta general election
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Progressive Conservative Roy Brassard 8,383 61.58 +1.33
Liberal Donna Gole 3,378 24.81 +10.46
Social Credit Derry H. Macfarlane 815 5.99 -9.18
Confederation of Regions Dennis Combs 683 5.02
New Democratic Ruth Scott 355 2.61 -7.62
Total valid votes 13,614 100.00
Rejected, spoiled, and declined 22
Eligible electors / Turnout 20,413 66.80 +10.24
Progressive Conservative hold Swing -4.56
Source(s)
Heritage Community Foundation. "Election results for Olds-Didsbury". Retrieved April 30, 2018.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Election results for Olds-Didsbury". abheritage.ca. Wayback Machine: Heritage Community Foundation. Archived from the original on December 8, 2010. Retrieved 8 June 2020.
  2. ^ "Gordon Kesler and his Western Canada Concept colleagues, successful..." UPI. Retrieved 2018-04-30.
  3. ^ "Western Canada gets its first separatist leader". Christian Science Monitor. 1982-02-19. ISSN 0882-7729. Retrieved 2018-04-30.
  4. ^ (www.broadport.ca), Broadport Canada Inc. "Alberta Association of Former MLAs". www.albertafmla.ca. Retrieved 2018-04-30.

Further readingEdit

External linksEdit

Coordinates: 51°43′26″N 114°07′16″W / 51.724°N 114.121°W / 51.724; -114.121