Brian Fisher isn't the only provincial New Democrat executive candidate complaining about the state of the party. In a news release distributed last week, Stephen Elliott-Buckley - who is running to be its vice-president - wrote the New Democrats have been "been losing core supporters in droves. Members of the provincial NDP are justifiably alienated. They are quitting and canceling their monthly donations. They didn't show up to help on campaigns during the election and they didn't even show up to vote." As a result, Mr. Elliott-Buckley - who has also been organizing an effort to "transform the party into a powerful force for change" - says there's a need to "build a social movement inside the party, empowering and including members." The following is a complete copy of that news release.
The BC NDP needs to be the electoral wing of a progressive social movement throughout BC.
In the 21st century it's not politicians and parties that get elected but clear values and active communities.
The BC NDP has been losing more than elections; in recent months, it has been losing core supporters in droves.
Members of the provincial NDP are justifiably alienated. They are quitting and canceling their monthly donations. They didn't show up to help on campaigns during the election and they didn't even show up to vote.
The party must stay true to our core values: our party policy. Trying to please everyone has failed our members.
NDP members believe in carbon taxes. We don't believe in a new Port Mann bridge or the Gateway Project. We know environmental issues are social justice issues. Why should we assume ordinary citizens do not?
People who want to run the party need to see that how we fix the party begins by simply asking our members how to fix the party. There is a tremendous amount of passion, intelligence and wisdom in the party to involve.
We must build a social movement inside the party, empowering and including members as more than donors but the essence of our party as we build relationships and community around the province through meaningful dialogue.
We need to run the party from a place of fearlessness and democracy at every level. On November 27, the BC NDP convention is our opportunity to begin making this shift. So we have to affirm our stance and not let our critics keep us from getting the job done with integrity.
Without this culture of democracy and fearlessness we'll never even know if we've ever truly lost any election.
So, I'm publicly announcing my candidacy for Vice-President of the BC NDP. In the spirit of democracy and fearlessness, I encourage other members thinking of running for the party executive to also go public with their plans so more than just convention delegates will ever find out who wants to lead the party.
We have nothing to lose.