Clark’s BC Liberal Government Loses Confidence Vote

It’s now up to the lieutenant-governor to give NDP a shot, or call an election.

By Andrew MacLeod 29 Jun 2017 |

Andrew MacLeod is The Tyee’s Legislative Bureau Chief in Victoria. Find him on Twitter or reach him here.

Premier Christy Clark’s BC Liberal government has lost a confidence vote in the British Columbia legislature, defeated 44 to 42 by the NDP and Green MLAs.

It will now be up to Lieutenant-Governor Judith Guichon to decide whether to give John Horgan and the NDP an opportunity to form a government and test the confidence of the house, or to send B.C. into another election.

“British Columbians are closer than ever to getting the new leadership they voted for,” said Horgan in a statement. “And we’re ready to form a strong, stable government that works every single day to make life better for people.”

Speaker Steve Thomson, a Liberal MLA, resigned immediately following the vote.

Ahead of the vote, Clark spoke in the legislature in defence of her government’s throne speech, which adopted dozens of positions from her opponents, including ones her party had campaigned against ahead of the May 9 election.

“It is a sincere acknowledgment that we didn’t get it all right,” Clark said.

The people of the province clearly want more action on social issues and affordability, she said, including childcare and housing. “We need to do more and we can do more,” she said.

Clark said Andrew Weaver and his BC Green Party have shown themselves to be like other politicians after campaigning to vote their consciences and support good public policy.

“At the very first opportunity to do that, they refused,” Clark said. “We attempted in good faith to work with the Greens, but they wouldn’t even hear our offer.”

Clark said the NDP is “grasping for power” and that if the non-confidence vote results in a new election, her party will campaign on the throne speech presented last week.

Weaver released a statement saying that the Green caucus had decided it could not trust the BC Liberals to deliver the change the Greens campaigned for.

The Greens agreed in May to support the NDP on confidence and money matters in the legislature.

“Under this agreement, an NDP government has the confidence of a majority of members in the House,” Weaver said. “We have everything we need to work together to advance good public policy that will make a difference in the lives of British Columbians.”

He said he was encouraged that the Liberals have indicated their willingness to work on many of the same issues that are on the NDP and Green agendas.

In the May 9 election the BC Liberals won 43 of the legislatures 87 seats, one short of what they would need to win a vote over the 41 NDP and three Green MLAs voting together.  [Tyee]

Read more: Politics, BC Politics

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