Last night, a special meeting of the Non-Partisan Association's board of directors was held at the Marriott Pinnacle Hotel to discuss concerns about the mayoral nomination process. Those concerns were contained in a letter sent to the board last Friday by Warren Smith, a representative of nomination hopeful Sam Sullivan's campaign. Those familiar with the letter inform us the Sullivan campaign challenged the eligibility of 194 new association members to vote at the upcoming Saturday nomination meeting. According to review of 429 forms conducted by the campaign, those members aren't on the provincial voters list. Additionally, Mr. Smith questioned whether former Campbell administration cabinet minister Christy Clark's mayoral nomination campaign paid for the memberships of those they signed-up. If that were the case, those sign-ups would also be ineligible to vote. And what was the board's view of those complaints, you may ask?
Well, according to our operatives, the association executive passed a resolution to have the civic party's returning officer Jacques Leger review the 194 questionable names. But the board questioned the relevance of whether those voters were on the provincial list, noting association bylaws simply require members to be eligible or registered to vote in Vancouver's civic election.
As to the second challenge, the board has told the Sullivan campaign there isn't evidence to support such concerns. And it dismissed a suggestion that the association should have some kind of verification process ready on Saturday to determine everyone who's voting is eligible to vote. The board's view was that such a process already exists: voters need to have their membership forms on hand and sign a declaration stating they are 18 years of age, a Canadian citizen, a permanent resident and eligibile to vote in the election.
Of course, none of this will sit well with the Sullivanites. We can already feel campaign manager Colin Metcalfe's blood rising. But whether that pressure finds a release remains to be seen.