Feature Story Wednesday, May 10, 2017
It Ain't Over 'Til It's Over
NDP pulls off a minority
government, absentee votes yet to be counted
Tracey O'Hara and Patti MacAhonic
supporters watched the nail-biter election cheering with each seat the NDP won.
t may be raining outside, but the sun is certainly shining on the NDP and
Green Party who
together may be in the position of forming the first minority government in
65 years after stealing the majority of seats from the BC Liberals.
However, that won't be confirmed until the absentee ballots are
counted May 22 and at least one recount in the Cowichan Valley riding where
candidates were separated by just 9 votes.
The NDP ended up winning 42 seats with 57 per cent of the vote. The Green Party set
precedents by winning 3 seats and coming up one short of getting official
The polls and pundits were right when they indicated that the Greens could
make the difference by stealing seats from the Liberals. But clearly it will
be the Greens who'll be making all the difference in the
Legislature with their 3 seats depending on which party they decide to back.
NDP candidate Tracey O'Hara remained upbeat despite giving up the riding to
Liberal John Martin.
There's no word who the Green Party will back
in the legislature. Party leader Andrew Weaver said it was too early to talk
about any allegiance.
In his election speech, Weaver called it a historic day for BC and North
America with the first "Green Party caucus".
"BC is ready to have politics done differently in this province," he
said. "British Columbians delivered that change tonight."
Christy Clark praised the effort Ellis Ross, former chief of the Haisla
First Nations, put into getting elected in the Skeena riding.
her speech afterward, she referred to BC as the promised land saying they
want a bigger economy, not a bigger government.
"We want to cut middle class taxes for those people who work so hard,"
Clark thanked NDP's John Horgan and Green Party's Andrew Weaver or their
"British Columbians did tell us tonight that they want to work across party
line and work together for a strong BC," she said. "We cannot afford to be
weak we cannot be distracted on non-partisanship issues."
She remained cheerful and optimistic despite the election results and said
Liberal candidates do it to make change and help guide the community through
the future but said it was always a tough row to hoe.
"If you got into politics to be loved, you'd be better off getting a dog,"
Amidst chants of "NDP" and "thank you John", Horgan said in his speech
following the results, that his party had a fantastic campaign and thanked
candidates and volunteers for their efforts "knocking on doors and making a lot
of sandwiches" but cautioned supporters not to put the cart before the
"Thanks for working so hard to build a better
BC," he said. "BC has waited 16 years, and we're going to ask you to wait a
little bit longer until all the votes are counted."
voted to get big money out of politics, action on climate
change and an economy that works for everyone," he said.
Closer to home in Chilliwack, 17,698 people voted. Liberal John Martin
picked up 8,641 votes to win the Chilliwack riding, followed with a strong
showing from NDP candidate Tracey O'Hara who came in with 5,673 votes. Green
Party candidate Wayne Froese placed third with his 3,014 votes, while
candidate Ryan McKinnon wrapped it up with a total of 370 votes.
MacAhonic (left) and Tracey O'Hara remained upbeat with a houseful of
cheering supporters digging into a smorgasbord of food with thanks to local
O'Hara's strength was in the downtown area and clearly beat Martin.
"I'm really happy with the results," said O'Hara thanking her campaign
manager David Swankey for all his hard work and indicated she'll be back in
2021 to give it another go and be successful.
Looking at the number of votes O'Hara got, it was easy to see how hard she
worked to win NDP voters in a staunch Liberal riding–just a couple of
churches behind Martin.
In the Chilliwack-Kent riding, Liberal candidate Laurie Throness secured his
riding once again with 11,257 votes, while Patti MacAhonic finished with
6,678. Green Party Josie Bleuer had an astounding 3,088 votes which defies
logic considering she was absent for most of the all-candidates meetings and
was rarely seen on the campaign trail.
The Valley Voice News | All