Tuesday, March 17, 2009

BC Liberal Party Leadership Race

I am 99% sure this is the last election for Gordon Campbell as leader of the BC Liberals. I believe he will resign sometime after the election, but when?

I am certain his resignation will be after the Olympic Games, so he will be premier through to the end of the Paralympic Games on March 21st of 2010, but how much longer after that?

He needs to leave his successor enough time before the election in 2013 to allow them to have a track record in office. To me this means he needs to step down before the spring session of the house in 2012. He also needs to announce it early enough to allow for there to be a race to replace him at a Liberal convention in the fall. The normal cycle has a Liberal convention in the fall of 2010 and 2012. The 2012 convention is too late.

Based on all of this, I see Gordon Campbell announcing his retirement at the end of the spring session of the house in 2010 with the new leader to take over in the fall of 2010.

So who is there that will replace him? I am not sure who I see in the race at this point. The next leader needs to have a proven track record in politics, they realistically need to be born between 1952 and 1975, and they need to have the drive and desire to become leader.

Here are some names in no particular order, just throwing some ideas out there.
  • Colin Hansen - he would be 60 when taking over, a bit on the old side to become premier.
  • Christy Clark - this is her chance to do it, not going for it this time may push her out of contention for the future.
  • Keith Martin - he has done everything he can at the federal level and has a strong personal appeal. Though he needs someone to help him organize if were to try
  • George Abbot - though I have no idea if he has the desire to be premier
  • Mary Polak - only realistic if she gets a stronger public presence between now and the timing of the race. If she gets a major cabinet post after the election, I see her as a candidate for leader.
  • Kevin Falcon - he has the organizational skills to win a race, but he also has more baggage than most of the Liberals. Right hand man to Rich Coleman might work better for him
  • Dave Hayer - maybe, not convinced he has the desire, but I am certain there will be at least one Sihk running in any leadership race.
  • Mike de Jong - I see him being a candidate and see him having good odds of winning
  • Rich Coleman - I see him running to be the standard bearer of the right wing
  • MP Suhk Dhaliwal - The provincial scene may offer him more to go after for his ambition than the federal scene.
  • Surrey Mayor Diane Watts could make a very interesting person to be in the race.
On personal level I would like to see Coquitlam Mayor and former MLA Richard Stewart run for leader of the BC Liberals.
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