Liberals leaving ship

It was a busy week for the BC Liberal party, which saw the announcement of numerous politicians saying they won’t next year.

It was a busy week for the BC Liberal party, which saw the announcement of numerous politicians saying they won’t give the election thing another go next year.

The most recent was MLA George Abbott, who was a leadership contender for the party. He followed fellow contender Kevin Falcon, and Chilliwack MLA John Les. The Children and Family Development Minister, Mary McNeil, also made the same decision.

Whether this is surprising is up to you to figure out.

The BC Liberals have been facing interesting times. Their leader, Christy Clark, is facing a lackluster approval rating. A survey done in June showed her with a 30 per cent performance rating.

Her disapproval rating was at 63 per cent.

With two leadership contenders among the those leaving the fold, you have to wonder if they’re departing with a bit of bitterness in their mouths; you know, ‘I could have done a better job’, etc.

Meanwhile NDP leader Adrian Dix must be having a good time. He told reporters that in contrast to all the sudden departures, leadership candidates on the NDP’s side, which had a leadership election roughly the same time, are all staying on in various roles.

Christy Clark has called these departtures a chance for renewal.

That it is, but losing such senior members of the cabinet and party means a big job in rebuilding their strength and experience.

Especially hard is that the NDP have picked up the seats made vacant by earlier outgoing Liberal members. (Those were Barry Penner and Iain Black.)

If there is indeed a rift forming within the party, a renewal is needed. But with such a low opinion rating, renewal may have to start from the top.

On this subject, might I as well offer commentary on a political pet peeve of mine: John Cummins of the BC Conservative party issued a statement after Falcon’s resignation commending him for his public service. Very admirable, those who left the Liberals recently are all hard working people.

However, Cummins goes on to talk about the Liberals’ turmoil and announces an upcoming new approach from the Conservatives. Seemed like the wrong time to me.

Cameron Orr

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