Steven Myers announces new shadow cabinet roles
© Guardian photo
PC Leader Steven Myers, left, announces his shadow cabinet with, from second left, Hal Perry, James Aylward, Olive Crane and Colin LaVie.
If there is any division within the Opposition office there were no signs of it Wednesday as Opposition Leader Steven Myers unveiled his new shadow cabinet.
Myers, who took over as leader last week, said there was a strong balance in the Conservative caucus and they were going to capitalize on their strengths.
“This is a positive thing for us and we’ll ensure that the Ghiz government is held accountable in the spring session and every session going forward,” he said.
Myers and the rest of the caucus gathered in the lecture theatre at Province House for the announcement where they stood shoulder to shoulder in their first public appearance for the media since they chose their new opposition leader on Feb. 14.
There were a few changes made to each MLA’s critic area, with Myers taking over as critic for intergovernmental affairs and the premier’s office from former leader Olive Crane.
Tignish-Palmer Road MLA Hal Perry, who was the opposition leader for 13 days before stepping down, will be the party’s house leader while Stratford-Kinlock MLA James Aylward will be the opposition whip.
It all came after weeks of seeming division within the party that started with Crane’s announcement she was stepping down as party leader but staying on as opposition leader. She later decided not to keep her job as opposition leader and Hal Perry took over with the support of two other MLAs in the caucus.
That led to Myers, who was chosen as interim PC Party leader, and the party president Blake Doyle obtaining a legal opinion that said Myers should be the rightful opposition leader.
Perry stepped down last week and Myers now holds both the opposition and party leadership.
All five MLAs presented a united front as they took turns addressing the media after each of their critic areas was announced and there was a lot of talk about working as a team.
When it came to questions about caucus unity, Myers said the Conservative MLAs all cared about the areas they represent and cared about doing the jobs they were given.
“If I had a hockey team that had that much in common I’d be laughing,” he said.
When Crane stepped to the podium, she said she was happy to still be able to represent Islanders.
“There’s many issues in many different areas to hold government accountable,” she said.
As for her role in the caucus now that she is no longer the PC Party or opposition leader, Crane said she has always taken the view that the MLAs were all part of a team.
“We have a great team,” she said.