Top of Mind - July 4, 2011

What are the chances of a fall election?

Liberals MLAs have been asked whether they want to run again. They're also submitting the names of their senior campaign staff to the party this week. And non-incumbent ridings are providing lists of potential candidates to election readiness co-chair Rich Coleman. These are all the things you'd expect the Liberals to do if they were going to hold a fall election.

But last week's announcement that the harmonized sales tax referendum timeline will be extended by two weeks means its results might not be available until early September. So Premier Christy Clark will have even less time to decide whether a writ should be issued if she doesn't want her campaign to crash into the province's municipal elections, which will take place on November 19.

There's also the question of whether Ms. Clark would want to be on the hustings if the province's teachers, who voted 90 percent in favour of a strike last week, are taking job action when schools are supposed to be open. And, anecdotally, it doesn't feel like we're headed to the polls - even if the Liberals are going through the motions of getting ready for an election.

23 Comments

I want an election as soon as possible so we can get rid of Rich Coleman, Smart Meters and over paid government officials and agencies. Coleman did not do a proper reveiw of BC Hydro like he claimed on the Voice of BC. David Cobb at BC Hydro must be removed an incompetant left over from VANOC and also the head of BCLC must go!

Has Rich Coleman done a proper job of any portfolio he has held? Doubtful.

It is dependent on the HST vote either way.

If the HST is rejected Christy will have no choice but to go to the polls before the full state of the provinces finances is known. She will also want to leave the mess for the NDP if she loses the election. That way she, with the help of the media, can blame the NDP for any of the pain that follows and issues that come up.

If the HST is supported, she will conclude that she has time and will wait for 2014 when the HST goes to 10% thinking that people will forget. There are people who will vote "no" to keep the HST but will never vote liberal again.

Her arrogance will be her undoing.

Well, knock me over with a lead trial balloon, because....

It looks like Mr. Holman and Alise Mills might be on the same page with this one.

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If people wonder why I'm so trigger-happy, this is why. All this unbalanced, whack-a-BCLib stuff is so unfair to my friends.

Ross, I read your blog. It was so nice to read you busk AGAINST anything free enterprise on the blogosphere... NOT!

Hal, I really think Premier Christy Clark, MLA will drop that writ either way. The Alise is just a special operative for the muincipal guys and doesn't want them to have to fight for airspace against the Christy v. Adrian match. Many BCLibs have learnt the hard way she's an important part of our flanks' protection from the BCNDP.

Lawson1945, I don't see why you had to personally attack the Hon. Rich Coleman, MLA like that. Sounds to me like you should move to Fort Langley and run against him...

Maybe the reason you are so "trigger happy" is that you have the hots for anything/anyone liberal. Even when you have nothing to contribute, you still insist on a few mindless cheers for your idols.

The fact is that whatever happens, the longer Christy has to deal with issues of government the less popular she will become. She knows that and won't risk more sessions in the legislature than she absolutely has to. The lady is scared and it is beginning to show.

Well, would a thunk it....

Looks like the lead trial balloon is fast becoming conventional wisdom.

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Richard Coleman Energy Minister a failure at all departments he has been involved with must be held accountable for the fallen BC Hydro Towers near Surrey, wasted billions on stupid smart meters and failed as expected to do a proper reveiw of BC Hydro, clean out those executives now!

Hal, not surprised at your response.

Ross, I'd really watch it if I were you. Lobbing litigious charges on your blog... deleting polite yet anon comments... the list goes on.

Please quit shooting for the basement, people!

Alas, what are we to do if the comment comes from the basement?

Hal, do as I do... return fire with class. Great question.

Class, from the basement?

Hal, perhaps the Busking Blog or the Jumping Fish is more your flavour where if you dissent you get troll removal or blocked. Nice to have started a cottage industry, wow... I guess the BCLib Air Force is so doggone good I keep away the BCNDP from a real news site. Wow, I could get used to this.

JosefK, I'm thinking that Sean is very tolerant of your posts. perhaps he feels that given your "classy" responses, I am entitled to a reply. Unfortunately we have all become rather humored by you continual cheer leading of anything liberal even though in your country "liberal" is synonymous with communists.

Look at you first post above. That was classy? Expected but that is all. So in the future you might try something to show that you actually can process ideas without showing paranoia about who is "whacking your liberal".

It has been fun, pointless but fun.

Sometimes Hal I believe in being snarky and sarcastic. The personal attack after personal attack some lob here is just requiring and demanding of fumigation. Ross & I also have our issues and now he's moved on, good for him. Hence that comment.

Hal, I'm not a fan of censorship having been censored while I read comment after comment of hatefest on some of these blogs by partisan Dippers. But I'm also not a fan of people who lob personal attacks like equating a friend of mine to being corrupt on his blog or Lawson constantly going over-the-top whack-a-mole on the Hon. Rich Coleman, MLA.

I know we've had this conversation before, but these MLAs make sacrifices to serve hence the compensation. One of those sacrifices is in reputation.

Off hot for the evening. Thank you.

JosefK, there is an old line about "If you can't take the heat, get out of the kitchen" or a another suitable version of it for politicians, "If you can't take the heat stop provoking the electorate." There is no shortage of the people willing to do the job and many create less heat.

I do not beleive that the comments about Coleman are out of line. Arguably, other than the social housing file, he's been almost useless on any other issue (e.g. removal of a large tract of private forest land in southern Vancouver Island with no public benefit negotiated to accompany its removal which is now causing all kinds of issues at the local level). It appears to me that he maintains his "stature" because of the importance of him and his riding to garner support (both bodies and $) for the Libs.

I'd also venture to guess that a lot of people posting here are simply tired of the Libs. I think this fatigue is reflective of the electorate in general. The Libs have been in power for a long time, appear bereft of any new policy ideas, there is a perception that they are too focused on what's good for business at the expense of taxpayers (or ratepayers in the case of their cash grabs from BC Hydro and ICBC) so it is not surprising that the tone of comments on this site reflect this.

Oh, and these comments are coming from someone who is no fan of the NDP so it's not like I have a partisan perspective on the issue.

I do not believe that the comments about Coleman are out of line. Arguably, other than the social housing file, he's been almost useless on any other issue (e.g. removal of a large tract of private forest land in southern Vancouver Island with no public benefit negotiated to accompany its removal which is now causing all kinds of issues at the local level). It appears to me that he maintains his "stature" because of the importance of him and his riding to garner support (both bodies and $) for the Libs.

I'd also venture to guess that a lot of people posting here are simply tired of the Libs. I think this fatigue is reflective of the electorate in general. The Libs have been in power for a long time, appear bereft of any new policy ideas, there is a perception that they are too focused on what's good for business at the expense of taxpayers (or ratepayers in the case of their cash grabs from BC Hydro and ICBC) so it is not surprising that the tone of comments on this site reflect this.

Oh, and these comments are coming from someone who is no fan of the NDP so it's not like I have a partisan perspective on the issue.

A narrow Referendum rejection of the HST is the only outcome that would allow Christy Clark to claim credit for turning BC Liberal misfortunes around because she could then reason, with some plausibility, that voters were focusing their anger at the tax and not at the party. An acceptance of the HST, whether by a little or by a lot, will focus voters' anger over dishonesty squarely on the BC Liberals, undiluted by the HST (which would be off the table at this point.) Their sullied record combined with the dubious veracity of the mail-in ballot and the questionable impartiality of BC Liberal-appointed Electoral Officer will simply underscore their reputation of dishonesty. A thorough Referendum thrashing of the tax will make it evident that the dishonesty issue has crossed partisan lines, that voters are focusing their anger at the party as much as at the tax. The outcome of the Referendum might, therefore, determine when the next election is called.

But there might be another element at play, here.

There's a sense that Christy isn't getting the kind of respect and enthusiasm she expects from her caucus and, for a person who is bossy and bubbly, this must really bug her. She might not be getting enough co-operation in implementing her own policies, maybe not even getting full disclosure about what's been going on behind the scenes before she arrived as leader. When it comes to having an early election, it seems that Christy and her caucus are two different camps.

This isn't hard to understand. Virtually none of her caucus wants an early election because they're indelibly marked as part of Gordon Campbell's disgraced government (in fact, Christy was ridiculed by the other leadership contestants for her early election promise.) Of course this is why she won and they didn't. Again, virtually none of the caucus supported her leadership bid. They remembered her as being a brash and abrasive MLA. But worst of all, her populist bent makes her all too ready to sacrifice some of their sacred cows to get re-elected and, more likely, to interfere with well-laid plans that they had reckoned on having four years to affect.

Maybe, just maybe caucus will be able to convince her to hold off on the election if the HST is soundly rejected. But they'll have to promise to be good girls and boys and let her be the boss. They'd also have to obediently endure her populism and sometimes impulsiveness at the helm of what has been, under Campbell, a complex and highly integrated machine.

On the other hand, if the HST is only narrowly rejected or accepted she may go for it for all the reasons Hal has raised, and then some: whether she ends up Premier or Leader of the Opposition, she will be finally legitimized as leader of her party and certainly will be the boss. Besides, MSM has always given plenty of airplay to BC Liberal Opposition (such as they do not for the NDP) and I think that's something Christy really likes.

All I can say is I wish more comments on Public Eye Online were more like Reid's & Scotty's. Thanks gents.

O.K JosefK, now after that I would expect you to take your own advice here. Except that your post (the only one) on the latest item would suggest that you are back to your old ways.

I also don't think that it is necessary to proclaim that one is not a fan of one or the other party. Comments, if they are thoughtful and intelligent, stand on their own.

So JosefK, why not fulfill your wish by making yours the same.

@JosefK are you the chief monderator for this site and have a pro liberal bias, I told you before I was a LiberalBC member now I plan to switch to BCC when the time is right, this is a good place for a reform member and a conservative voter, the only reason I have not joined to Conservative party because I have always hated the progressive side of Mulroney, second worst PM in Canada, after Jean (The Fool) Chretien, my god the man has never broken 90. I met him at the green onin table with Jack Webster a club mate at Point Grey Golf &CC. I said to my friends man is this guy a bull shitter, but before he was elected.

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