Tomorrow is last day for BC Liberal leadership hopefuls to sign up new members who will be able to vote for new leader of BC Liberals and new premier of British Columbia. First expectations are that BC Liberal party will finish this process with doubled membership which was approximately 35.000 at the moment of premier Campbell’s resignation late last year. Beside this very important element of campaigning process Liberal candidates are highly engaged in presentations of their programmes which will be implemented in mandate period March 2011-May 2013.
Medal’s backside is strong and uncompromised fight between candidates to impress new and old members in upcoming weeks and ensure that their program will get full support. I think that is not necessary to say that hardest punches are coming against trio Clark-Abbott-Falcon, leaving De Jong-Stilwell-Mayne are more concerned how to access media then how to fight with each other.
De Jong’s 10.000 members
Mike De Jong’s campaign team decides released information regarding their membership quotes. According to their count in last few months since campaign started they sign up 10,000 new members. When we compile all data and media accounts connected with De Jong’s campaign, plus their own accounts in social-media we can easily say that this count is not too wrong. Mike De Jong is one of the popular politicians from Liberal caucus and well known to major part of the constituencies in the province.
Mike De Jong (Photo: The Vancouver Sun)
Ten thousands new supporters gives a great chance to De Jong to continue playing an important role in public life and political life of the province. Beside a fact that he’s chances to win are pretty small, De Jong will be member of “kingmakers” club on February 26th, and beyond that strong Cabinet/Legislature front row player.
How he reached this amount of support? Good quality ideas, solid thinking about party future and unity, and what’s the most important element good connections and communication with visible minorities all over the province. At the end we can conclude that Mike De Jong did very good job in this campaign and deserves such amount of support.
Falcon proposes restoration of NGO grants
“I announce that, as Premier, I will restore the gamin grant program to its full, prior level. This is part of my broader vision for these grants–which includes setting $2 million aside annually for playgrounds, exploring the possibility of making service club and other organization dues tax-deductible, streamlining the application process, and looking at bringing back capital grants and boosting them to $150,000 annually”, said Kevin Falcon in press release.
Kwantlen Park, Surrey (Photo: www.wmfa.net)
Falcon’s statement is second statement regarding gaming grants. First was issued by Christy Clark earlier in campaign when he promised to enlarge funds for certain percentage, but after her the flip-flop with HST we can’t be sure that she wouldn’t change her mind on this one.
Two elements of Falcon’s statement are particularly interesting. He wants to set aside 2 million annually for playgrounds what is really important for BC youth and their health. Newly released data in several different researches showed significant rise of obesity among youngsters and teenagers what could be supressed with more playgrounds and club activities. Exploration of tax-deduction in for club and organizations will perfectly correlate with addition of new playground what will boost chances for more youngsters to become members and improve their health and physical activity in next few years.
He’s largest and most dangerous problem could be Ministry of Finance and budget projection for next couple of years. Deficit projection and fight with it also could be one of the dangers against Falcon’s plan. Anyways if he becomes premier and makes wise choice whom to choose as his finance general he would have a great chances to accomplish his mission in next mandate period.
Rising campaign against Christy Clark
I already wrote something regarding Christy Clark’s flip-flop on HST, but earlier today I received a link to YouTube video posted on “Anyone But Christy” channel which describes her actions pro et contra for HST referendum and possible vote in Legislature. Everyone who’s interested in to watch this interesting video should go on YouTube and check it.
“ABC” coalition was already mentioned by several journalists in the province and at the national media level, and with every new release from Clark’s team this coalition gets more meat to attack her.
One of her strongest campaign rivals George Abbott attacked her over HST flip-flop, she had exchange with Falcon over business supporters , and both of these end up against her very well. Her only chance to win is her popularity, and we will see how that will play on her behalf. Currently doesn’t goes well.