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Money helps buy votes

I found it curious when our current councillor issued a statement recently, supposedly in response to events occurring with the provincial UCP. His first point was one that echoed his comments made during the election campaign:

• Neither myself, nor my office, have an official connection to any of the political parties at either the Provincial or Federal level

Why state this now? It certainly wasn't necessary at the councillor level. This statement was carefully worded, and most likely technically accurate. But is there more to it? Thou doth protest too much, methinks - to crudely borrow a line from Shakespeare.

So to connect the dots, it seems there was a Freedom of Information request by Postmedia into the expenditures of third parties on last fall's election. The largest spender and influencer in the election was Calgary's Future, spending approximately $1.6 million dollars. A candidate that received thousands of those dollars in promotional support was Evan Spencer, current Ward 12 Councillor.

Why does this matter? Calgary's Future was funded by the local unions and it's primary contact is Alexander Shevalier. This individual is well known for his ties to the provincial NDP and is past president of the Calgary Currie NDP.

Is there anything wrong with that? Not necessarily, depending on your own personal opinions. However, while the councilor's statement is technically accurate, it doesn't tell the whole story. He accepted and embraced the endorsement and support from Calgary's Future. On one hand, his recent statement could show a lack of knowledge and understanding of the political environment in which he campaigned. On another, it could be very misleading. Having all the related information can help everyone form their own opinions.

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