Countdown to 2013

It will be a different campaign next year; both the BC Liberals and the NDP will waste little time preparing for the renewed fight.

Thursday’s byelection is now in the record books. However, the campaign is far from over.

Last week, NDP candidate Gwen O’Mahony made history with a convincing win in Chilliwack-Hope.

The victory caps off O’Mahony’s third attempt to gain office – twice provincially and once federally. She ran a strong and polished campaign, demonstrating the experience and growth she has achieved since her first try. She showed an understanding of the issues and a connection to the community, something that was rewarded at the polls.

To be sure, divisions on the right aided her win. If the total ballots cast for the BC Liberals and BC Conservatives were combined, they would surpass the NDP by more than 15 per cent.

But it would be too easy to dismiss the NDP with simple math, and hopes that the equation might add up differently next year.

The BC Conservatives have given no indication they are going away any time soon. They’ve rejected any talk of a merger, meaning the party will be a factor in the general election just 13 months away.

Between now and then, O’Mahony will be fortifying the tiny beachhead she has gained in this sea of conservatism.

And there is opportunity. The NDP won not just because the Liberals lost votes to the BC Conservatives. The NDP also increased its portion of the popular vote, likely gaining some from the Green Party (which did not run a candidate), but possibly also from left-leaning Liberals who were uncomfortable with the party’s stride to the right.

Clearly the BC Liberals have some work to do if they hope to regain the riding. What they should know by now is that money and organization isn’t enough to secure a win, particularly if the BC Conservatives stay in the race.

It will be a different campaign next year, and with the stakes so high both the Liberals and the NDP will waste little time preparing for the renewed fight.

For the first time, however, the BC Liberals will face something they haven’t faced in a long time: an incumbent MLA.

~ Greg Knill, Chilliwack Progress

Just Posted

RCMP’s auto theft team nabs Chilliwack suspect

Kao Daniel Macaulay, well-known to police, arrested in stolen red Honda on March 20

UPDATE: Man with gunshot wound drives into ditch on Chilliwack River Road

Serious crimes investigators believe early morning shooting to be targeted

WATCH: Rally at MP’s office Friday in Chilliwack to stop KM pipeline

Water samples from Chilliwack rivers were delivered to MP Strahl’s office in a symbolic gesture

Garrison store going to new heights for children’s charity

Save-On Foods employees raising cash for BC Children’s Hospital, by throwing managers from airplane

Tourism Chilliwack brings home industry award of excellence

Sto:lo Welcome Figures carving project outside the Visitor Centre loomed large in the win

Vancouver Aquarium’s resident octopus released into ocean

Staff let the Giant Pacific octopus go into the waters near Bowen Island so she can reproduce

Canucks sing the Blues as they fall to St. Louis 4-1

Berglund nets two, including the game-winner, to lift St. Louis over Vancouver

Calving season brings hope for Cariboo ranchers

Still a lot of work ahead to recover from the wildfires

Canada’s Kaetlyn Osmond wins figure skating world title

The 22-year-old fwon the women’s singles crown with her Black Swan routine

B.C. pooches celebrate National Puppy Day

Check out some of the submissions from around B.C. for National Puppy Day 2018

Alberta tells B.C. to stop opposing pipelines if it doesn’t like gas prices

John Horgan said he would like to see the federal government step in to deal with high gas prices.

B.C. mother hit in truck rampage dies

Family confirms mother of four Kelly Sandoval dies almost two months after being hit.

B.C. officials failed to tell Kiwis Fraser Health CEO had been fired in 2014

New Zealand spending scandal exposes Dr. Nigel Murray 2014 exit from B.C. job

PHOTOS: Students exhibit stunning paper couture dresses

22 paper made gowns will be on display at Vancouver’s Oakridge Centre until March 27

Most Read