Who will replace Brad Wall as Sask. Party leader? – Saskatchewan

Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall has announced his retirement and political analysts say there are no obvious answers as to who might replace him.

“Saskatchewan needs renewal, a fresh perspective in leadership,” Wall said Thursday. He also said the province would benefit from a new voice and energy.

The new leader of the Saskatchewan Party will be chosen by its members, in a one-member, one-vote election.

“It’s going to be a very much a contested leadership race,” University of Saskatchewan political studies professor Greg Poelzer said. “Many will throw their hats in the race.” 

CBC News spoke to Poelzer and Regina Leader-Post columnist Murray Mandryk about potential candidates. 

Gordon Wyant

Gord Wyant is MLA for the constituency of Saskatoon Northwest. Currently, he is deputy house leader for the Sask. Party and the Minister of Justice and Corrections and Policing. (CBC)

“He’s … from an urban centre, somebody who is a former city councillor. I think he’s seen as more centrist within the party,” Poelzer said.

“And, so, he’s probably seen as more able to bridge both the federal Liberals and the federal Conservatives.”

He added that people see him as an able minister. 

Mandryk said it’s likely Wyant will run.

“I think there’s a significant camp in Saskatoon that would really like to see him run,” Mandryk said.

“Because of the nature of the race so far and that Wall as early as last January put a kibosh on any such talk, it’s really hard to get a sense of at this particular moment on this particular day as to how serious any of these camps are.”

Jim Reiter

Jim Reiter is MLA for the constituency of Rosetown-Elrose. Currently, he is the Minister of Health. (Mike Zartler/CBC)

“He’s been seen to be a loyal minister to Premier Wall. A lot of people think he’s, or perceive him to be, confident,” Poelzer said.

“There’s not many controversies on his watch, and he’s been a minister in different portfolios.”

Poelzer said people see him as a safe, confident leader. 

“I would put him in the category of ‘likely to most definitely,'” Mandryk said, adding that Reiter and Wall have similar attributes: “A broad base likability to him that doesn’t seem as hard edge as others in the conservative ranks would be portrayed as.”

Kevin Doherty

Kevin Doherty is MLA for the constituency of Regina Northeast. Currently, he is the Minister of Finance. (CBC)

Like Wyant and Reiter, Poelzer said Doherty has built up his reputation…

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