Welcome To
Acadia Broadcasting NewsThe Latest and Greatest ContentYour Trusted Local Source


New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs. Image: CPAC video capture/file photo

Premier says he won’t be resigning

By Brad Perry Jun 25, 2023 | 9:56 AM

New Brunswick Premier Blaine Higgs says he has no plans to resign as premier or party leader.

Higgs made the comments following a meeting of the party’s provincial council on Saturday.

There has been a growing chorus from within the party calling for the leader to step down.

On Friday, Trevor Holder resigned as post-secondary education, training and labour minister.

Holder, who is a seven-term MLA, said the decision to leave cabinet was not taken lightly.

“Under the leadership of Premier Higgs, caucus has been less about consensus and more about him getting his own way,” Holder said in a letter.

“While I have tried my best to continue to work to maintain the integrity of this caucus system, I have finally come to the conclusion that this is no longer possible.”

Holder said the premier’s “lack of empathy as well as his inability to listen to valid concerns of all members of his caucus demonstrates a further inability to lead” the province.

His resignation came eight days after Saint John Lancaster MLA Dorothy Shephard stepped down as social development minister.

On the same day that Holder resigned, four past party presidents released a joint letter saying the premier needs to do the same.

Claude Williams, Jason Stephen, Lester Young, and Brian Harquail said the premier’s “top-down, authoritarian style of leadership” has led to significant missteps.

In addition, they said there is “growing and significant dissatisfaction” with his leadership from within the party.

On Wednesday, a regional vice-president of the PC Party confirmed that at least 26 of 49 riding association presidents have signed letters calling for a leadership review.

“With all due respect, I feel that caucus feels they’re not heard by the premier, and I feel that the riding associations feel that they’re not heard as well,” said John Williston, who is vice-president of the Westmorland Albert region.

“That top-down leadership style can only exist for so long in a political movement and I think people are looking for a new style of leadership and a new chapter.”

Under the PCNB constitution, a leadership review can be added to the party’s next provincial council meeting agenda if more than 50 members, including at least 20 riding association members, make a request in writing.

A two-thirds majority vote of the provincial council at that meeting would trigger a leadership review within the next three months — a number Williston believes is “very attainable.”

Those letters have to be submitted at least 21 days before a meeting of the provincial council in order for the question to be added to the agenda.


Leave a Reply