Byelection offers glimpse at future for BC Liberals

Byelections indicate NDP will likely win next election

Barring major unforeseen events, the NDP will likely win the next election. That was made clear in last Thursday’s two byelections. The NDP won Port Moody-Coquitlam by a sizeable margin. They had a popular candidate in recently retired Port Moody Mayor Joe Trasolini, and results were much as expected.

The real surprise and key result was in Chilliwack-Hope, where the NDP won a seat they have never held. Gwen O’Mahony took the seat in a three-way fight, with the BC Liberal vote melting away, and the resurgent BC Conservatives coming third with 25 per cent of the vote.

Liberal candidate Laurie Throness got 4,399 votes and 31 per cent of the vote. This compares with Barry Penner in the 2009 general election, who got 8,985 votes. So the Liberals, in the course of three years, lost more than half their support, with a large proportion of that going to the BC Conservatives, whose candidate John Martin got 3,548 votes.

There is another factor – the voter turnout. In the 2009 election, 16,865 votes were cast in Chilliwack-Hope. Last Thursday, despite the scrutiny this race has been under, and numerous visits by the premier and other party leaders, 14,013 people voted.

That means more than 2,800 stayed home — likely because they wouldn’t vote for the Liberals, and did not want to vote for anyone else. If the Liberals can convince most of those people to come back to them in the next election, the Liberals will win these kinds of seats.

However, the vote splits in other ridings put the NDP in position to form the next government. The Liberals won a number of seats in 2009 by narrow margins, with little or no Conservative opposition.

If the Liberals can convince enough disaffected voters to come back to them, they will keep some traditional strongholds. But unless their political fortunes improve drastically, in three-way election fights they will lose many of their seats.

 

Just Posted

CSRD to seek voter approval to borrow for $2 million for park land

Regional district advances plans to purchase Centennial Field for $2.75 million

Mudslides expected to keep Seymour Arm road closed for at least three days

Alternate route Celista-Blueberry Forest Service Road, accessible by four-by-four vehicles.

Bold, brave and intriguing theatre lined up for Edge festival

Theatre on the Edge showcases local and visiting talent at Shuswap Theatre

Disaster relief: four tips for coping with wildfires, smoky skies

Being shrouded in smoke or having to flee from wildfires can cause anxiety, stress, depression

Help needed on restoration of historical cabin in the Shuswap

The Cache Cabin served as the halfway point on the journey to the Mara Lookout Ranger Station.

Video shows fireworks shot at swan in Alberta

Alberta Fish and Wildlife is investigating the incident in Grande Prairie

Okanagan bylaw officer best in B.C.

Al Harrison of Vernon named Bylaw Officer of the Year at annual association conference

Man accused of assault at South Okanagan beach gets bail

Thomas Brayden Kruger-Allen was granted bail at the Penticton provincial courthouse on Monday

Surrey RCMP raises Pride flag amid din of protesters

There were about 30 protesters on either side, and 20 Mounties doing crowd control

‘Text neck’ causing bone spurs to grow from millennials’ skulls, researchers say

Technology use from early childhood causing abnormal bone growths in 41 per cent of young adults

B.C. teen killed by fallen tree on field trip remembered as hero

13-year-old Tai Caverhill was the first to spot the tree falling and warned his friends

Our history in pictures

Bedford’s Pharmacy at the west corner of Alexander Avenue and Front Street… Continue reading

Should B.C. get rid of Daylight Saving Time?

The province wants to know, as state governments down south make the move

Air Canada reviewing how crew left sleeping passenger on parked plane

In a Facebook post, the woman said she woke up ‘all alone’ on a ‘cold dark’ aircraft

Most Read