B.C. NDP leadership into home stretch

Nanaimo MLA Leonard Krog (left) endorses Port Coquitlam MLA Mike Farnworth for the NDP leadership.

Port Coquitlam MLA Mike Farnworth unveiled his ninth endorsement Wednesday, as the contest for the next B.C. NDP leader heads for its voting day on April 17.

Nanaimo MLA Leonard Krog considered his own leadership bid after being part of the group who forced out former leader Carole James in December. Now he says Farnworth is the “only leader” who can unite the party and win an election against Premier Christy Clark.

“I think Mike Farnworth represents the character, experience and ability that’s going to win the next election,” Krog told a news conference at the B.C. legislature Wednesday. “That’s no reflection on Carole. The voters had their conclusion twice with Carole. We didn’t win. I’m convinced, as are many others in the caucus and many in the party,  that with a new leader we could win.”

Farnworth said the fact that six of the 13 dissident MLAs have endorsed his candidacy shows that the “reunification process” is going well, and that’s important with an uncertain year ahead. Clark’s hesitation to seek a seat in a by-election in former premier Gordon Campbell’s constituency suggests a provincial election could come as soon as this summer, he said.

A cabinet minister in previous NDP governments, Farnworth has attracted endorsements from around the province. They include West Kootenay MLA Katrine Conroy, Stikine MLA Doug Donaldson, Victoria-Swan Lake MLA Rob Fleming, Nanaimo-North Cowichan MLA Doug Routley, Surrey-Fleetwood MLA Jagrup Brar and Delta North MLA Guy Gentner.

Vancouver-Kingsway MLA Adrian Dix has his own leadership supporters, including Surrey MLAs Harry Bains, Sue Hammell and Bruce Ralston, Nelson-Creston MLA Michelle Mungall and former NDP leader Joy MacPhail.

Juan de Fuca MLA John Horgan’s team includes Burnaby-Deer Lake MLA Kathy Corrigan, Esquimalt-Royal Roads MLA Maurine Karagianis, Skeena MLA Robin Austin, North Island MLA Claire Trevena, Alberni-Pacific Rim MLA Scott Fraser, North Coast MLA Gary Coons, Cowichan Valley MLA Bill Routley and Fraser-Nicola MLA Harry Lali.

The other leadership contenders, Powell River-Sunshine Coast MLA Nicholas Simons and marijuana activist Dana Larsen, have trailed in polls and do not have support among elected NDP members.

Party-sponsored debates continue around the province. Candidates were in Qualicum Beach Tuesday talking about health care, with youth the theme for Thursday night’s debate in Victoria. Audio or video files of debates are available here.

The final three debates are environmental sustainability April 2 in Vancouver, energy in Prince George April 4 and jobs April 6 in Terrace.

Just Posted

Tsunami warning issued for coastal British Columbia

Warning issued following 8.0 earthquake off Kodiak, AK

Red Cross Workers to visit Bella Coola January 23 – 25

Red Cross workers will be at the Moose Hall Jan 23-25 to meet one-on-one with individuals

Bella Coola to benefit from massive investment in coastal internet

A combined investment of $45.4 million will bring new and updated high-speed internet on the coast

Nearly $500,000 available for internships with First Nations government

Funds announced through partnership with Northern Development and Government of Canada

O’Reilly trial scheduled to start January 15 for Anahim Lake murders

O’Reilly is charged with first-degree murder

Testing the Google Arts & Culture app

Going face to face with art

VIDEO: Fuel truck and train collide in B.C. causing massive fire

More emergency crews are still arriving on scene of a massive fire at the Port Coquitlam rail yard.

Back to work: U.S. government shutdown ends after Democrats relent

Short-term spending measure means both sides could see another shutdown stalemate in three weeks

Man lives despite malfunctioning defibrillator at B.C. arena

A middle-aged man went into cardiac arrest after at game at Pitt Meadows Arena last Wednesday.

Cause of Northern B.C. seaplane crash released

TSB releases report on seaplane crash during a water landing in 2016 near First Nations community

Vancouver police crack down on pop-up pot vendors

Officers raided merchants’ tables on Robson Square late Sunday

Bell Media, NFL take appeal over Super Bowl ad rules to top court

At issue is a ban on substituting American ads with Canadian ones during the game’s broadcast

Crown seeks 4.5 years jail for B.C. woman convicted of counselling tax evasion

Debbie Anderson the latest from group to face jail for teaching debunked ‘natural person’ theory

UPDATE: Brother of B.C. teen killed by stray bullet says the death left a void

Alfred Wong, 15, was gunned down in Vancouver while on his way home from dinner with his family

Most Read