It’s deadline day for the United Conservative Party of Alberta leadership race

The United Conservative Party of Alberta has confirmed three candidates for its leadership race as time is running out for the nomination deadline.

Travis Toews, Danielle Smith and Brian Jean were confirmed as candidates ahead of Wednesday’s deadline.

Toews resigned as finance minister at the end of May to run while Jean is currently the UCP MLA for Fort McMurray-Lac la Biche, and Smith is the party’s former leader. Alberta Wildrose.

Rajan Sawhney, Rebecca Schulz, Todd Loewen and Leela Aheer say they have submitted the required number of signatures and are awaiting confirmation as nominees.

Both Sawhney and Schulz left Prime Minister Jason Kenney’s cabinet to run, while Aheer is in the UCP caucus and Loewen is a party member but sits at home as an independent.

Two other candidates – former member of the Legislative Assembly Raj Sherman and former investment banker Jon Horsman – are still scrambling to secure the required minimum of 1,000 supporter signatures.

The deadline is 5 p.m. Wednesday for applicants to submit a set of consent forms and documents with at least 1,000 signatures from across Alberta and at least $75,000 for the entry fee and good conduct deposit.

The party must choose a replacement for Premier Jason Kenney, who announced in May that he was leaving the top job after receiving 51% support in a party leadership review.

The result came after months of political turmoil within the UCP, which was created in 2017 when the Wildrose Party merged with the Progressive Conservative Party.

A new leader is expected to be elected on October 6, following a postal vote.

Party members will also be able to vote in person at any of the five polling stations that will be set up across the province.

The next provincial election is scheduled for May 29, 2023.

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