Wednesday, August 31, 2011

B.C. Premier Clark sticks with fixed May 2013 election date

Following months of speculation fuelled at times by her own elusiveness on the topic, Premier Christy Clark finally offered on Wednesday a definite answer as to whether not B.C. will head to the polls this fall.

In a last-minute interview with The Province before addressing her caucus in the evening, Clark said she had decided against calling a fall election so that she could focus on her jobs agenda in the upcoming sitting of the legislature.

“I am not going to call an election this fall,” Clark said. “And so the plan is to go to the set election date, May 2013.”

The surprise announcement should bring to a close any talk of an early election call, sparked when Clark, fresh off her February leadership win, expressed her desire to seek a mandate from the public.

Clark said her decision not to send B.C. into an election had nothing to do with poor polling numbers, but rather was the result of extensive conversations she had with “thousands and thousands of people” who advised against it.

Opposition leader Adrian Dix took aim at Clark for allowing the election talk to “disrupt and waste the time of her government,” saying his caucus is ready to continue working.

“This was an internal dispute between the premier and her political advisers, and I think the people of British Columbia have paid a price because of the Liberal party’s obsession with its own interests,” the NDP leader told The Province Wednesday evening.

“All of this election speculation was caused by one person: Christy Clark,” Dix said. “Clearly, the only consideration she had was her own polling results.”

In her announcement, Clark also said she was influenced by the economic uncertainty of the international market and a voter base fatigued by the recent federal election and the upcoming municipal elections.

“We’ve watched all this uncertainty unfold in the international market — that will have a big impact on jobs,” said Clark. “And so I think I have a much bigger responsibility.”

Clark said the government will outline its jobs plan in a throne speech in early October. The plan, said Clark, will set out how the government intends to defend jobs “so that British Columbia families can keep putting food on the table for their kids.”

“I think it’s the right decision [not to call an election] and I think it’s the right decision for our economy,” said Clark. “This is what British Columbians have been telling me. When I said I was going to change government so we started listening to people, I meant it.”


No wonder the Premier has no time for the sitting of the legislation if she is talking to "thousands and thousands of people". Perhaps she should get down to business instead of just talking.


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I have been a resident of Coldstream since 1976. I have had 15 years of experience on Council, 3 years as Mayor. As a current Councillor I am working to achieve fair water and sewer rates and to ensure that taxpayers get fair treatment. The current direction regarding water supply is unsustainable and I am doing all I can to get the most cost effective water supply possible.