I have been offered the opportunity to attend the PC AGM here in Calgary this weekend as a 'new media' observer. Leaving aside the simple curiosity of a political nerd I accepted for a number of reasons. First, I think it is important that our parties continue evolving to reflect the new information environment and changing the traditional notions of what constitutes political press is a part of that. Secondly, I am curious about the atmosphere of the gathering - how do the delegates feel about the party and its situation? Finally, how is the party dealing with the challenges it is publicly perceived to be facing, including complacency and fading popular support.
In looking at these issues I am not interested in talking to the elected party representatives, whether MLAs or party executives, but rather the volunteer rank and file that actually make a political party function. In particular I will be targeting the constituency presidents and organizers. (Organizers have conveniently tagged the presidents with orange ribbons - thanks!) So far several have taken the time to speak with me, so we'll see how this plan works out.