Tuesday, February 8, 2011

BC Leadership 2011: The New Class

Anyone get the Saved by the Bell reference? No? Meh.

Anyways, its time for another update about the goings on over on the West Coast, with the two major parties both holding leadership contests at the same time, after unceremoniously dumping their old leaders.

To start off, the BC Liberal leadership race is forming into something of a horserace, though it depends on who you talk to. According to 308.com's rankings of the contestants, it's a pretty close race between George Abbott and Christy Clark, with Abbott getting the support of caucus members, and Clark being a somewhat "grassroots" favourite, with the apparent backing of regular voters. However, looking at some of the estimates for how many members candidates have actually brought in, it's pretty much a route for Clark, but with Kevin Falcon following relatively close behind.

To that end, Clark's recently gone about seemingly trying to gain the upper hand and creating her own distinctive brand in the race (though if you ask some, she's distinctive enough), backing out on her support for a free vote on the HST in the BC legislature, and arguing with the business-oriented Kevin Falcon over the merits of whether or not their business support is more distinctive or not, and of course going after her old boss. However, if you believe the Globe and Mail (which is a great resource for this stuff, by the way), it seems all the other candidates are severely afraid of Clark and may be ganging up to stop her.

Moving on over to the BC New Democrats, the race is a little more wide open, at least according to 308.com, though as I think, it seems that Mike Farnworth, the "moderate" candidate in the race, probably has a slight advantage. That being said, other candidates like John Horgan, Nicholas Simons, and Adrian Dix, aren't necessarily far behind. I'd say indeed that Dix is actually farther ahead than the numbers say, given his support in the party, and some of the momentum seen.

To that end, Mr. Dix has shown how hilariously weird the BC NDP leadership is really going to be, and indeed how divided they may end up being. After being endorsed by the pro-business Joy McPhail, who encouraged an outreach towards BC's business community on Dix's part, he decided to present policies that would guarantee the entire business community west of Newfoundland would gang up to stop him. Yep. Good idea there.

And let's not even get started on Harry Lali.

Both parties are also facing some questions over their voting and membership systems, with a cat being signed up for the Liberals, and the NDP are bribing people to become members for their party.

I love BC politics.

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