At a dinner in Calgary, Mayor Ralph Klein tells a group of newcomers that his city does not welcome “bums” and he’ll protect Calgarians from “a lot of creeps” looking for work. Newspapers across the country carry stories with the mayor’s statements attacking easterners. Klein denies this report, and says “the word I used was kick ass and get them out of town.”
Eastern Canadians flocked to Boomtown — 2,600 new people arrived in Calgary last month — to find jobs during a North American recession. As a result, the city deals with a housing crisis and the majority of bank robberies are committed by migrants.
Additionally, Klein threatened “cowboy tactics” including stacking people up in the jail cells, and noting that he “won’t get too excited about it” if some of the eastern “riff-raff” were roughed up a bit by a police officer.
However Klein’s opinions were shared by the majority of Calgarians and Albertans. The general consensus can summed up with a famous quote of Kleins: “If you can’t make it after a couple of weeks… get the hell of town”
Ralph Klein (1942-2013) remained the Mayor of Calgary until 1989 and oversaw the XV Olympic Winter Games in that city. He became Premier of Alberta in 1992 and remained Premier until 2006. During his tenure he achieved much public love by paying off the provinces debt from massive spending cuts. He is fondly remembered for his ‘RalphBucks’ energy rebate cheques and is considered by many Albertans to be the province’s greatest premier.