Joe Trasolini - 6,070 - 54.4%
Dennis Marsden - 3,377 - 30.2%
Christine Clarke - 1,720 - 15.4%
Gwen O'Mahoney - 5,772 - 41.2%
Laurie Throness - 4,399 - 31.4%
John Martin - 3,548 - 25.3%
Lewis Clarke Dahlby - 294 - 2.1%
Not that losing two strongholds is a good thing, but the results are better than expected, simply because the BC Liberals ended up second in both of them. The expectations were so low, in fact, that it was expected that Chilliwack-Hope would end up being a NDP-Conservative fight, and even I myself figured that the Conservatives could have had a very good shot at winning the riding.
And by most accounts, they should have. What with the recent defection giving them their first MLA in decades, and the continuing poll numbers showing them tied with the Liberals, this really should have been theirs to lose. And while, yes, Chilliwack-Hope did vote for the HST, thereby giving it some semblance of pro-government-ness, the "star candidate" quality of John Martin, plus the inherent momentum, should've really given them an edge.
Instead, they ended up third. And the rolling average for BC that I have predicted it, not my gut. For Chilliwack-Hope, my projection predicted it as 36% NDP, 35% Lib, and 23% Con, while Port Moody-Coquitlam was 43% NDP, 34% Lib, and 16% Con. Those numbers don't account for the lack of a Green candidate however, and would have given obvious edges to the NDP. Goes to show maybe I should trust my gut a little less, eh?
This gives Christy Clark's government a bit of a break. They can now point to Chilliwack-Hope and correctly say that the split between the free-enterprise parties more than likely allowed the NDP to win the seat (we may not know for sure, to be honest, anti-HST voters could've been split between the NDP and Cons). And as the party with the best track record against the NDP, the Liberals remain the best option to keep the "socialist hordes" at bay.
I think we'll see an uptick in Liberal support over the coming weeks. To mark the occasion, here's my current rolling average for British Columbia: