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BC Election 2017
BC Politics

PHOTOS: See BC’s Election Night Seesaw

The cheering, breath-holding, and nail-biting in images from both the Liberal and NDP camps.

Christopher Cheung 10 May

Christopher Cheung is a reporter and page editor for The Tyee. Follow him on Twitter @bychrischeung.

Even for those who bet on it being a close election, they probably didn’t think that it was going to be this close.

It was a seesaw of emotion last night for British Columbians as the ballot reports started coming in. The lead spot swayed back and forth between the BC Liberals and the NDP throughout the evening, making for one of the most exciting elections in decades.

After midnight, the BC Liberals finally settled in that top spot at 43 seats. The NDP have 41 and the Greens three. With absentee votes being counted in about two weeks and recounts that could make all the difference in tight ridings like Courtenay-Comox, B.C.’s future these next four years is hardly decided.

But the seesaw meant a lot of gasping and cheering as the BC Liberals and the NDP took the lead and fell behind, took the lead and fell behind again. It also meant a lot of running back and forth for this journalist who was taking photos.

Thank goodness that the BC Liberals, headquartered at Vancouver’s Fairmont Waterfront, and the New Democrats, in the bowels of the Vancouver Convention Centre, weren’t too far from each other.

Here’s some of the drama that unfolded in images, complete with actual nail-biting.

(Please be patient as images may take some time to load.)

8:00 p.m.

With the NDP

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The NDP were able to drive their campaign bus into the lower exhibition hall of the Vancouver Convention Centre.
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It was a small crowd at first, with a number of families.

8:49 p.m.

With the BC Liberals

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The Liberal camp, by contrast, was held in a much smaller space at Fairmont Waterfront. Not many people arrived yet when the count began.
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The Liberals were first to take the lead.
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‘Keep calm and Christy on’ shirts were available.

9:25 p.m.

With the NDP

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The larger crowd at the NDP headquarters was thrilled when their party took the lead.
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Victorious NDP candidate Melanie Mark’s mother, Yvonne, was excitedly cheering in the front row.

9:41 p.m.

With the BC Liberals

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Supporters were taking the t-shirts’ advice when the NDP were ahead.
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Andrew Wilkinson (right) was re-elected in Vancouver-Quilchena. On the left is Nick Koolsbergen, an executive director of BC government communications and research who was Stephen Harper’s former director of issues management.
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Even media were struggling to keep up with the constant back and forth. One reporter wrote five different openings for the same story throughout the evening.
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Ken Denike and Sophia Woo (right), formerly of the Vancouver School Board, were in attendance at the Liberal camp.
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Jane Spitz (right), a young candidate in Vancouver-Hastings at 22, lost the riding to NDP incumbent Shane Simpson. This is Simpson’s fourth victorious election. The Greens’ David Wong, a vocal advocate of his party’s housing platform, came in third after Spitz.
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Media were invited to set up as early as 9 a.m.

12:04 a.m.

With the NDP

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NDP supporters looking on as the BC Liberals flip-flopped between 42 and 43 seats.
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12:21 a.m.

With the BC Liberals

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Some RCMP officers watching election coverage on a cell phone.
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Christy Clark: ‘Some things only happen in British Columbia.’
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Of the extremely close results, Clark said, ‘We have been presented with an opportunity by British Columbians to open a whole new dialogue in our province, in our legislature.’

12:35 a.m.

With the NDP

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Supporters crowded to hear John Horgan speak.
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Horgan: ‘A majority of British Columbians voted for a new government, and I believe that is what they deserve.’
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