Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Some quick thoughts on BC Politics

The race for the BC Liberals seems to be finalized at the five candidates.   The only issue now is what the actual election process will be and this will only be finalized shortly before the vote by the members.  I suspect there will be no major reason to approach the Liberal race till after Christmas.

Over among the NDP there is no date yet for a vote and no interim leader yet.   There are some names that sound like they are looking at being in the race - Harry Lali, Peter Julian, and Mike Farnworth.   I have heard Nathan Cullen and Jenny Kwan state they are not interested.  I have not heard yes or no from Adrian Dix, John Horgan or Rob Fleming.

Until there is someone clearly in the NDP race, there is not much to say about the race as all the speculation is not worth anything at all.   What I will note is that the sense of internal strife in the NDP has dropped way off this week.

Then we go to the people under the radar, which is where they say they want to be at the moment, the BC Conservatives.    The party has been gaining members and money consistently over the last year and this is without a leader.   The party has no debts and has organized constituency associations in somewhere around 1/3 of the ridings in BC.

The BC Conservatives are something more than a third party protest by a small number of people.   In 1991 the BC Liberals had almost no members and no money but managed to win enough seats to become the official opposition.   In 1996 BC Reform held onto to two seats but were not a party with a large membership or money.   The same was true of the PDA in 1996.   BC Unity had no members of money when they ran in 2001.   And the Greens have not built their membership and raised much money since they rose to third party status in 2001.

The Conservatives have done something different, they are building a party organization first and then want to try and go somewhere with that.   This means they will have more resources in people and money than any other 'upstart' has had going into a BC election.   With a leader that is not a wing nut and has some credibility as a politician, the party is well positioned to do well in the next election.   They still have almost two and half years before an election and that is a lot of time to finish the ground work for a party.

At the moment they remain off of the radar and the political media and the pundits are not paying attention, but they should be, they will be a major factor in the 2013 election in this province.
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