Jason Kenney announced on Saturday in Edmonton his candidacy for the leadership of the newly formed United Conservative Party.

The former Alberta Progressive Conservative Party leader is joining former Alberta Wildrose leader Brian Jean in the race. Calgary lawyer Doug Schweitzer has expressed an intention to run.

The election will be on October 28.

PC and Wildrose party members overwhelmingly agreed to merge in votes that were held last weekend in Calgary and Red Deer, respectively.

The UCP was recognized Tuesday as the official Opposition by the Speaker of the legislature. Nathan Cooper was named interim leader.

During his 35-minute speech, Kenney went after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Alberta’s NDP government.

 “I gotta tell you, I’m sorry, Justin, but I’m not distracted by the socks and the selfies,” Kenney said to loud cheers at the Italian Cultural Society in north Edmonton.



With files from Jeremy Thompson and the Canadian Press