A former cabinet minister is seeing a strong show of caucus support as he steps into the race for Saskatchewan Party leadership.
Rosthern-Shellbrook MLA Scott Moe made the official announcement in Saskatoon Friday, flanked by more than 20 MLAs and his family.
“What we offer here today, is the idea that we have a team of people, rather than an individual … to ensure the founding principles of this party continue to shape our policies and decisions for the future of this province,” he said.
“Many around the province are looking for someone to replace our premier, who we all know has been the most popular premier in the nation of Canada for a number of years now — this is a daunting task.”
Jim Reiter, Minister of Health and MLA for Rosetown-Elrose, introduced Moe at the launch.
“Those of us who work with Scott everyday are supporting him,” Reiter said. “You clearly can see that with the huge number of Sask. Party MLAs standing here with Scott today.”
As of Friday morning, 21 MLAs were listed on Moe’s campaign website as endorsements.
Just one hour before the launch, Meadow Lake MLA Jeremy Harrison bowed out of the race in a statement to media.
“(I’m) throwing my support behind Scott Moe,” the statement read. “Scott is a longtime friend and the candidate in this race who most closely shares both my values and principles.”
Other candidates in the race include Tina Beaudry-Mellor, Gord Wyant, Alanna Koch and Ken Cheveldayoff.
Moe was born and raised on a grain farm between Shellbrook and Parkside and received his Bachelor of Science in Agriculture from the University of Saskatchewan.
Moe was first elected to the Saskatchewan legislature in the 2011 provincial election.
He has served as the Minister of Advanced Education, Minister of Environment, the Minister responsible for Saskatchewan Water Corporation and Saskatchewan Water Security Agency and a member of Treasury Board.
While Moe had a hand in the government’s recent budget, he did not rule out reversing some the unpopular cuts.
“As we move forward I think its important for us to engage with Saskatchewan people on how can get our budget back to balance,” he said. “We need to engage across the province and we’ll come forward with some of those policies through the next number of weeks.”
The Saskatchewan Party will hold its leadership convention in Saskatoon on Jan. 27.
— With files from 650 CKOM’s Brent Bosker.
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