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Carbon tax opposition lacked vision: former NDP MLA

VICTORIA - A New Democratic Party MLA who chose not to run in this election said the party will have to take a close look at its policy on the carbon tax.

“The question everyone's going to ask is whether it was wise to take the stand on the carbon tax,” said David Cubberley. “I'll be one of those who'll be saying that was a strategy that should have been thought through a lot more.”

Cubberley won in Saanich South in 2005 with the endorsement of the Conservation Voters of B.C.. He made his decision to step down before the NDP took its position against the B.C. Liberal Party introduced carbon tax, he said, but added he disliked the position.

“These are pressing environmental issues,” he said. “The stand that we took had appeal in the short term for people who were somewhat victimized by the way that tax was done, but it was not a strategy from my perspective with enough vision to carry the day.”

The NDP environmental platform was strong he said, but it got lost in the debate around the carbon tax that had the NDP on the defensive.

Reporters asked James about the carbon tax in a scrum following her concession speech. “I continue to believe the carbon tax is ineffective and isn't fair, so I still have those concerns,” she said.

She insisted she had no regrets about the campaign.

Andrew MacLeod is The Tyee’s Legislative Bureau Chief in Victoria. Reach him here.

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