Alberta Leaders Debate 2012

With less than 2 weeks to go before the provincial election I thought today was a good time to start looking through my options. I admit that in past I’ve voted for the political party logo and not the person. I compare it to cheering for my favourite sports team – ultimately I’m cheering for the Boston Bruins jersey and not the individual players. Players come and go but I’m really more concerned with the team results.

After looking through the various party platforms I couldn’t come up with a clear winner. I liked what I saw from a number of the parties but my findings didn’t lead me to a final decision.

So I decided to change things up a bit.

I opted to completely disregard the party affiliation and look at the person. I had a read through each website, took a look at the social media profiles of the candidates and checked out mentions on local media. I discovered lots of information and can honestly say that we have some pretty quality people running in my riding. Great news for the people of St Albert… but I was still no closer to picking my candidate.

I started to think about the job of an elected official. If you look at the very core of this whole election thing we’re essentially voting for the person that we’d like to represent us in the big domed building downtown. Although most are associated with a political party and for the most part tow the company line, we’re still placing a vote for a person. I want to vote for a person that actually listens to his/her constituents. I want to vote for someone that will actually take the time to engage with me.

So I turned to social media.

I noticed that almost all of the local candidates (I couldn’t find a Twitter account for my NDP candidate) were on Twitter so I decided to give them a shout out. I was curious to see who monitored their social media and who used Twitter to actually engage with people. Here’s how it all went down…

It was encouraging to see some of the candidates take the time to respond. My ultimate goal was to find a person that was willing to listen and engage. That’s the kind of person I want representing me. Mission accomplished.

Some may say that I’m “wasting” my vote by allowing Twitter to help me decide. I disagree. I simply used a social media platform to help identify the individual that best met my “listen and engage” requirements. Some people watch a debate. Some read the newspaper. Some wait until a candidate knocks on their door. I used Twitter.

Thanks to Tim for paying attention and reaching out. You’ve got my vote!

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Post Written By:

Duncan McGillivray

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Director of Advertising

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