Campbell resigns seat for byelection

Gordon Campbell's resignation as an MLA sets up a by-election in Vancouver-Point Grey.

Gordon Campbell's resignation as an MLA sets up a by-election in Vancouver-Point Grey.

One day after being replaced as B.C. premier, Gordon Campbell has resigned his Vancouver-Point Grey seat.

His departure, effective today, sets up a by-election where Premier Christy Clark may choose to run for a seat in the legislature. Clark was sworn in Monday, becoming the 35th premier of B.C. and demoted several of the long-serving cabinet ministers of Campbell’s decade in office.

Clark said Tuesday she hasn’t made a decision about where to seek a seat, but Vancouver-Point Grey is “certainly the most likely scenario.”

B.C.’s Election Act requires that a byelection be held within six months of a seat being vacated. Clark said it is unlikely she would wait that long.

“I’d like to get back into the legislature,” Clark said on her way into a caucus meeting. “I’d like to get back into question period.”

Clark has indicated she will seek a seat as soon as possible, and not consider a general election until after a province-wide vote on the harmonized sales tax. If that is held in June as Clark has said she prefers, it may require the legislature to be recalled to change the rules for the referendum.

Campbell was first elected to the Legislative Assembly in a 1993 by-election, wining the riding of Vancouver-Quilchena. He was elected in Vancouver-Point Grey in the next four consecutive provincial general elections, 1996, 2001, 2005 and 2009.

“It has been an honour to serve the people of British Columbia as an MLA, as the Leader of the Opposition and as Premier,” Campbell said. “There are few things more rewarding than serving in public life and I feel fortunate to have had such an opportunity to do so for nearly three decades in a province and a city that I love.”

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