The BC NDP's embattled leader, Carole James, survived a crucial test of her leadership today, when provincial NDP council delegates defeated a motion to hold a leadership convention next November, 97 votes to 18.
But up to a dozen current NDP MLAs voted against her, including Jenny Kwan, Leonard Krog, Nicholas Simons, Harry Lali, and others, were among those that voted for the motion, leading to what appears to be a significant amount of the 34 NDP MLAs willing to challenge James' leadership. That simply does not bode well for her.
I believe that James is likely to be replaced before the next election, and that she will not be the next Premier of British Columbia, even if the NDP romp to victory (a good possibility). So the fact that James managed to pass this test now, does not mean much for her long-term future. And even if I'm wrong, and she does become Premier, she will most likely not remain so for long. After all, if the NDP get into a comfy position, like they were in the early 90's, they're more likely than not to fracture even more, rather than stabilize and govern effectively. That's just BC politics for you.
If the resentment within the NDP caucus grows, that could even help the BC Liberals survive. If the new leader of the Liberals manages to unite instead of divide the caucus and the party, any continued dissolution within the NDP just gives the Liberals a new excuse to stay in power. Who really wants to return to the uncertain 90's?
It'll be an interesting couple of years, to be sure.