09/09/2011 04:23 EDT | Updated 11/09/2011 05:12 EST

Alberta Tory leadership candidate Gary Mar won't rule out fall general election

EDMONTON - Alberta Tory leadership candidate Gary Mar isn't ruling out a general election this fall if he wins the race to replace Premier Ed Stelmach.

Mar was the only one of the six candidates speaking at a noon-hour debate who said he might consider a provincial vote this year.

Candidate Ted Morton said he wouldn't take that route because the next premier needs to show Albertans a budget and detail other priorities first.

Alison Redford and Rick Orman agreed, with Orman saying a throne speech and a budget would give Albertans a clear understanding of the new leader.

Doug Horner said the party needs time to unite behind its new boss and set long-term action plans.

Doug Griffiths said the election should go ahead in 2012 and anything earlier would be cheating voters.