NDP Takes Van Isle

NDP candidates took all but one Vancouver Island riding in the Oct. 19 federal election

NDP MPs elected Oct. 19

As of press time the NDP seemed to be bucking a national trend on Vancouver Island, with leads in six of seven ridings, the exception being the Green stronghold of Elizabeth May in Saanich – Gulf Islands.

By 8:45 p.m. Sheila Malcolmson had been declared winner in Nanaimo-Ladysmith with a lead of 32.7 per cent. Liberal Tim Tessier was sitting second at 24.6 per cent.

Alistair MacGregor had been declared and was pulling ahead of his opponents in Cowichan-Malahat-Langford at 35.4 per cent, compared to Conservative Martin Barker, who sat second at 24.1 per cent.

If that picture holds Vancouver Island will be a bulwark for two opposition parties: the NDP and the Greens. The NDP was leading or elected in only 35 seats nationally; May was the only Green candidate elected.

The outcome is a huge disappointment for the NDP, which started the campaign in August sitting high in the polls. It also comes as a disappointment for May, who had hoped to gain some ground on Vancouver Island.

On Saturday, Oct. 17, May visited Nanaimo-Ladysmith to bolster the campaign of Paul Manly. But with 60 of 254 polls counted, Manly sat in fourth spot with 19.6 per cent of the votes cast.

May and the Greens were also hoping for a breakthrough in Victoria, but incumbent Murray Rankin had a 3,290 vote lead over Green candidate Jo-Ann Roberts, and easily retained his seat.

Malcolmson said she and her campaign team had “a really strong sense from the voters that we were talking to today, but we never underestimate the strength or the Conservative base, so we are relieved and honoured to be getting some good news at the end of the night.”

Asked why the vote was so strong for the NDP on the Island, Malcolmson said, “I like to think that voters were compelled by our positive vision, and our support for social safety nets, stronger environmental regulations, and undoing the damage that the Conservatives have wrought.

“On Vancouver Island the choice to overturn that was New Democrats.”

She said the strong NDP presence on Vancouver Island will give politicians here a ‘common cause’ when it comes to the issues.

“We’ve got an emergent agriculture industry that’s value added,” she said. “We’ve got a real push and a common cause around value added forestry and doing what we can from the federal side to roll back raw log exports.”

She emphasized an “extremely strong push on repairing the damaged relationship with indigenous peoples.

“I feel we can work well with the Liberals on that, but having a strong NDP caucus on Vancouver Island is going to make our work that much more effective.”

Asked about electoral reform, Malcolmson said, “I’m deeply committed to it, I’ve seen it work very well… I am confident we will be able to bend the Liberals’ ear on that one.”

Just Posted

Volunteers take down after another successful Ladysmith Festival of Lights

Good crowd comes out for a sunny Sunday volunteer session of taking down decorations

Blood moon over Ladysmith

Gerry Beltgens shook off cold fingers this weekend to capture this image… Continue reading

Reflections of Ladysmith: The Art of Michael Dean

Work, place and people are inseparable for Vancouver Island painter

Ladysmith business recognized for supporting diversity in the workplace

Ladysmith Home Hardware, Ladysmith Pharmasave, LRCA, and Maya Norte saluted

Editorial: Looking back at windstorm helps us prepare for next time

BC Hydro says it was the most destructive storm in its history

UPDATE: B.C. legislature managers accused of excessive travel, expenses

Speaker Darryl Plecas’ report details ‘flagrant overspending’

Anti-pipeline group wants NEB to consider impact of emissions, climate change

Stand.earth filed NEB motion asking to apply same standard to the project as it did with Energy East pipeline

Teen in confrontation with Native American: I didn’t provoke

Nick Sandmann of Covington Catholic High School said he was trying to defuse the situation

Vancouver Island senior dies after medical emergency and rollover crash

Incident happened Saturday in Nanaimo on Poplar Street

MARS seeing influx of sick, injured eagles from north part of Vancouver Island

Factors for increase in eagle cases can be anything from lead poisoning to vehicle strikes

Suspect allegedly armed with handgun robs Island gas station

Incident occurred Sunday night in Nanaimo

Doug Ford says the Liberals’ carbon tax will plunge Canada into recession

The Ontario premier said there are already warning signs of difficult economic times ahead

Kamala Harris opens U.S. presidential bid in challenge to Trump

The 54-year old portrayed herself as a fighter for justice, decency and equality in a video distributed by her campaign

Woman offers luxury Alberta home for just $25 and a flair for the written word

Alla Wagner ran into health problems, which forced her to list the 5,000-square-foot estate at market value

Most Read