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Replacing leader 'worthwhile exercise' for BC NDP: Horgan

The resignation of Carole James as leader of the British Columbia New Democratic Party and the ensuing leadership race have been good for the party, says one of the contestants in that race, Juan de Fuca MLA John Horgan.

The Tyee asked Horgan during a recent interview, "Do you think the thing in the fall, with Carole James going, did it work out for the best? What's your sense of it in hindsight?"

"In hindsight, having now participated in three-quarters, nine-tenths, of a leadership contest, I think this has been in the best interest of the party," said Horgan.

"It was a very traumatic time for the caucus and for the party, no question about that, but as people have aligned, caucus members have aligned, behind the various candidates, I think we stand now focusing on the future, not on the past," he said.

"I think that ultimately this has been a worthwhile exercise for the party, a worthwhile exercise for the candidates to be sure," he said

In November, as 13 NDP MLAs pushed to have James leave, Horgan was a vocal supporter of the leader. The other caucus members running for the leadership, Vancouver-Kingsway MLA Adrian Dix and Port Coquitlam MLA Mike Farnworth, also supported James.

"I supported her right to the end, and when she made the choice to step aside, I felt that was in her best interest and the best interest of the caucus," Horgan said.

Advance voting in the leadership contest is open this week and a decision will be made April 17.

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

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