BC GREENS: Join NDP or Liberal??

BC GREENS: Join NDP or Liberal??

Postby Oscar » Sat May 13, 2017 3:27 pm

Clark Is Done; NDP and Greens Now Need to Deliver the Change BC Voted For

[ https://thetyee.ca/Opinion/2017/05/11/Clark-Is-Done/ ]

Even if results shift, power will remain in hands of John Horgan and Andrew Weaver.

By Bill Tieleman, 11 May 2017 | TheTyee.ca

While the dramatic cliffhanger B.C. election left many questions unanswered, one thing is clear — BC Liberal Premier Christy Clark is finished.

Almost 60 per cent of British Columbians voted for change [ https://thetyee.ca/News/2017/05/09/Nail-Biter/ ] — and now it’s up to the New Democrat and Green parties to deliver it by defeating the BC Liberals and throwing Clark out of office.

It might take days or a bit longer, but either way the decaying 16-year BC Liberal government with its despicable sense of privileged entitlement, dedication to big money and pay for play politics is going to be turfed.

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Re: NDP and Greens Now Need to Deliver the Change BC Voted F

Postby Oscar » Mon May 15, 2017 11:21 am

A Green Balance of Power in BC

[ https://www.greenparty.ca/en/blog/2017- ... y-magazine ]

Elizabeth May May 15, 2017

At a moment in politics when it seems positive firsts are few and far between, the news that the BC Green Party — the BC cousin of the federal Greens — will be forming its first-ever caucus in North America and in my home province was a rare blast of blessed good news.

The results of British Columbia’s May 9 election remain uncertain and will be uncertain until at least May 24. The seat count is tentative, as the one-seat difference between a Liberal minority and majority government is the riding of Courtenay-Comox, currently held by the NDP with a margin of nine votes. Elections BC rules dictate that mail-in ballots are not counted until May 22. As well, adding further uncertainty, even after the mail-in ballots are counted, a mandatory recount will occur if the margin of victory remains narrow.

One thing that is not in doubt is the election of three community leaders as Green members of the BC legislature – returning MLA and BC Green party leader, Andrew Weaver, Tsartlip First Nations member and former Central Saanich councillor, Adam Olsen, and Sonia Furstenau, a member of the Shawnigan Lake regional council who fought over four years to close the toxic waste site next to the lake – a project approved by BC’s Liberals.

Also not in doubt is the popular vote. Only due to the perversity of our First Past the Post (FPTP) voting system could the election results be unclear when the popular vote is unlikely to change. The voters of B.C. delivered roughly even support to the two main parties, 41 per cent each for the Liberals, 40 per cent for the NDP and an unprecedented 17 per cent of the vote to the BC Greens. But FPTP famously separates the seat count from the popular vote. With 17 per cent of the popular vote, a proportional system would deliver 15 Green seats – not three. With a proportional system it would be obvious that we would have a minority government. Christy Clark’s Liberals got 40 per cent of the vote and a near majority of 44 seats in the 87-seat BC Legislature. It is a teachable moment about the absurdity of FPTP that 10 votes in Courtenay-Comox could deliver a majority to a party with minority support.

It is also an occasion to revisit the benefits of minority parliaments. One of the most successful governments in our history was that of Lester B. Pearson. Pearson never had a majority. Still, with an informal cooperation agreement with the NDP, Canada benefited enormously. That government wove most of our social safety net – our universal health care system, unemployment insurance, pensions, student loans (without interest payments) and the flag! Not to mention the Canada-U.S. Auto Pact.

As the election results sink in, it is clear the BC Greens have accomplished something extraordinary. Seventeen per cent of the popular vote is a breakthrough in any democracy using FPTP. My colleague Caroline Lucas in the UK Parliament, like me, sits as the sole Green. Meanwhile, another global green friend, Green Party Swedish co-leader Isabella Lövin, serves as Deputy Prime Minister with five other Green MPs in cabinet posts. Fair voting matters.

It is, however, not unprecedented for Greens to hold the balance of power. In 2010, the Australian Greens, with a winner-take-all system of preferential voting, managed to win a first seat in the lower house. That sole Green seat, Adam Bandt’s in Melbourne, became critical as Labour leader Julia Gillard cobbled together a majority in parliament. She needed a few additional independents, but the formal agreement with the Australian Green Party included many concessions – for indigenous rights recognition, for campaign finance reform and for climate action, among many other reforms.

Greens have been part of coalition governments in many countries around the world. German Greens served in durable coalition in the government of Chancellor Gerhard Schröder from 1998 to 2005. The popular Green politician Joschka Fischer served as foreign minister and vice-chancellor for the duration of the coalition. Greens currently are in coalition governments in Luxembourg and Sweden, recently were in Finland and Ireland, and have been historically in France, Belgium, and the Netherlands.

Currently, in New Zealand the Green Party and the Labour Party have already forged a cooperation agreement, even as they prepare to compete against each other for seats in the fall 2017 election. Thanks to the decision to jettison FPTP for proportional representation in the mid-1990’s, politics in New Zealand has adjusted to a new political culture within which parties can benefit from cooperation. Voters in New Zealand will know in advance that the MPs elected under both the Greens and Labour are already prepared to share the role of governance to defeat the current ruling right-wing party.

The B.C. election cliff-hanger will continue to fascinate Canadians. This is, to put it mildly, an interesting result. But it is also offers an important education in the benefits of minority governments, the potential for proportional representation and the truth that you can get what you want, when you vote for what you want. At its best, May 9 gives oxygen to a debilitated democracy.


This article was originally published in Policy Magazine.
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Re: NDP and Greens Now Need to Deliver the Change BC Voted F

Postby Oscar » Tue May 16, 2017 11:01 am

The Council of Canadians supports the call for an NDP-Green alliance in British Columbia

[ https://canadians.org/blog/council-cana ... h-columbia ]

May 16, 2017 - 7:07 am

(PHOTO: NDP leader John Hogan, Green Party leader Andrew Weaver)

The Council of Canadians is calling on Green Party leader Andrew Weaver to work with NDP leader John Horgan to stop Liberal premier Christy Clark's extreme energy agenda in British Columbia.

While the final results will not be confirmed until May 24, at this point it would appear the Liberals won 43 seats, John Horgan's NDP won 41 seats, and Weaver's Green Party won 3 seats in the May 9 provincial election.

AM730 reports, "[With 170,000] yet-to-be counted absentee ballots — all eyes are on a few tight races that could still decide the election. UBC economist Kevin Milligan says there’s no way to know for sure what will happen when Elections BC opens absentee ballots on May 22nd, but he says a look at the 2013 election could provide some insight. Milligan analyzed the absentee vote in these tight ridings from 2013, then plugged the numbers into a simulation that he ran one million times."

According to Milligan, there's a 60 per cent chance the outcome will remain the same (Liberals 43, NDP 41), a 25 per cent chance it could be a tie (Liberals 42, NDP 42), a 20 per cent chance the NDP could win two extra seats (NDP 43, Liberals 41), and a 10 per cent chance the Liberals could win one more seat (Liberals 44, NDP 40).

In the meantime, The Globe and Mail reports, "The Premier’s office intends to appoint a cabinet in June and then to recall the legislature quickly. Her government would need to introduce a Throne Speech which would require a vote of confidence from the House." The article adds that Clark intends to quickly introduce a new budget as well.

The newspaper notes that Clark could include these (relatively modest) measures in that budget to win Green Party support: new spending on education, free daycare for working parents with children under the age of 3, restoring a high-income tax bracket for those earning more than $108,460 a year, a 1 per cent increase in the corporate tax rate, a carbon tax increase of $10 a year for each tonne of carbon emitted, and an end to the freeze on welfare rates in the province.

But 24 Hours columnist Bill Tieleman (formerly an NDP strategist and communications director at the B.C. Federation of Labour) says, "It's time to talk about a 'red-green alliance' – between the BC New Democrats and Greens – common in Europe between social democrats and environmentalists – to defeat the BC Liberals. Clark – unless final vote counts give her one more seat – cannot govern without the Greens."

Tieleman highlights, "Comparing the BC NDP, Green and BC Liberal election platforms makes it obvious Clark’s party is way out of step with the other two. The BC NDP and Greens would end corporate and union political donations; want a proportional representation electoral system; oppose the Kinder Morgan oil pipeline; want significant action on housing affordability; have serious concerns about BC Hydro’s Site C dam, the $3 billion George Massey bridge and liquefied natural gas projects; support for universal child care and increased public transit funding; boosting both disability and social assistance benefits and a lot more."

Federal Green Party leader Elizabeth May notes, "The B.C. election cliff-hanger will continue to fascinate Canadians. This is, to put it mildly, an interesting result. But it is also offers an important education in the benefits of minority governments, the potential for proportional representation [under which the Greens would have won 15 seats, not 3] and the truth that you can get what you want, when you vote for what you want. At its best, May 9 gives oxygen to a debilitated democracy."

To date, we have generated 1,250 letters to Horgan and Weaver that says, "NDP and Green Party voters have clearly expressed opposition to Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain pipeline, Site C and the expansion of the LNG and fracking industry. They want B.C. to embark on a just energy transition process and ensure Indigenous rights are respected. The time for action and collaboration is now. Working together to address these pressing issues would be an earnest step in that direction."

To add your voice to this demand, please click here:
[ https://secure.canadians.org/ea-action/ ... n.id=70001 ]


The Council of Canadians is a non-partisan organization that endorses no political party, but rather is committed to building a peoples' movement capable of holding any government accountable to the public interest.

#bcelxn17

Brent Patterson's blog
Political Director of the Council of Canadians
[ https://canadians.org/blogs/brent-patterson ]
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Re: NDP and Greens Now Need to Deliver the Change BC Voted F

Postby Oscar » Thu May 18, 2017 10:15 am

B.C. Greens oppose Kinder Morgan & Site C, but remain open to deal with the Liberals

[ https://canadians.org/blog/bc-greens-op ... l-liberals ]

May 18, 2017 - 6:49 am

The day after the May 9 provincial election in British Columbia, the Council of Canadians posted this online action alert [ https://secure.canadians.org/ea-action/ ... n.id=70001 ] calling on Green Party leader Andrew Weaver and NDP leader John Horgan to work together to stop Liberal premier Christy Clark's extreme energy agenda, notably the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain tar sands pipeline and the Site C hydro-electric dam on the Peace River.

Over the past eight days, more than 1250 people responded and sent an email to both party leaders on this issue.

Last night, The Globe and Mail reported on a media conference in which, "[Weaver] highlighted large gaps between his Green Party and the Liberals on several key issues, including the expansion of the Kinder Morgan oil pipeline, which the Liberals have approved, and the construction of the Site C dam, Ms. Clark’s pet mega-project."

Weaver says, "The fact that we are being told to ship diluted bitumen in our coastal waters is just reckless, and this government is just reckless for agreeing to it. ...We believe we need to support the First Nations in B.C. who are in court now."

That said, Weaver has not put environmental issues on his list of three non-negotiable demands (a ban on union and corporate donations, a commitment to proportional representation, official party status for the Greens), and he maintained yesterday, “We can collaborate with anyone. We understand what compromise means.”

There is an increased urgency to this now.

The final seat count will be confirmed on May 24 and Weaver has just established a negotiating team -- that includes Norman Spector, a chief aide to former prime minister Brian Mulroney -- for talks with the Liberals and the NDP. Premier Clark says she has already had "good conversations" with both party leaders.

Our action alert says, "NDP and Green Party voters have clearly expressed opposition to Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain pipeline, Site C and the expansion of the LNG and fracking industry. They want B.C. to embark on a just energy transition process and ensure Indigenous rights are respected. The time for action and collaboration is now. Working together to address these pressing issues would be an earnest step in that direction."

To add your voice to this demand, please click here:
[ https://secure.canadians.org/ea-action/ ... n.id=70001 ]


The Council of Canadians is a non-partisan organization that endorses no political party, but rather is committed to building a peoples' movement capable of holding any government accountable to the public interest.

#bcelxn17


Brent Patterson's blog
Political Director of the Council of Canadians
[ https://canadians.org/blogs/brent-patterson ]
Oscar
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Re: BC GREENS: Join NDP or Liberal??

Postby Oscar » Thu May 25, 2017 4:40 pm

B.C. vote count completed, May 31 deadline set for formation of next government

[ https://canadians.org/blog/bc-vote-coun ... government ]

May 25, 2017 - 7:16 am

(PHOTO: The Council of Canadians Vancouver-Burnaby chapter at a protest against the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline, May 2016.)

It looks like British Columbia could now be on the cusp of a much-needed change in its provincial government.

The Globe and Mail reports, "With all the ballots from the May 9 election officially in, B.C. Premier Christy Clark has been denied a majority government after the Liberals’ hope for recapturing one more seat evaporated on Wednesday [May 24]. After three days of recounting ballots in two ridings, and adding in previously unopened absentee ballots across the province, Elections BC’s results showed no change in seat numbers for each of the three parties in the May 9 election – 43 Liberal, 41 NDP and 3 Green." Forty-four seats are required to form a majority government.

Notably, the popular vote tightened slightly from the original count on election night - the Liberals now have 40.36 per cent of the vote (down from 40.84 per cent), the NDP have 40.28 per cent of the vote (up from 39.86 per cent), and the Greens have 16.84 per cent of the vote (up from 16.75 per cent).

The Globe and Mail adds, "Green Party Leader Andrew Weaver has been facing increasing pressure from progressive advocacy groups to reject a pact with the Liberals in favour of the New Democrats under Leader John Horgan..."

The day after the election, The Council of Canadians launched this online action alert [ https://secure.canadians.org/ea-action/ ... n.id=70001 ] calling on Horgan and Weaver to form an alliance to stop Clark's extreme energy agenda, including the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain tar sands pipeline and the Site C dam now under construction on the Peace River.

CTV reports, "[Weaver] said they've seen a 'staggering' number of emails from members of the public pushing them toward working with one party or the other, but that 'it's all on the table right now'."

To add your voice to those calling for an NDP-Green alliance to stop Kinder Morgan and Site C, please click here now:
[ https://secure.canadians.org/ea-action/ ... n.id=70001 ]


The Globe and Mail highlights, "Now, Ms. Clark must win the support of the Green Party caucus for a Throne Speech and a budget if she is to hang on to power. ...[But] the Greens oppose some central planks in the Liberal agenda, including the construction of the Site C dam and the expansion of the Kinder Morgan oil pipeline, which could make a Liberal-Green alliance difficult."

So, it looks hopeful that the NDP and Greens could strike a deal that would secure an NDP minority government with Green Party backing.

The CBC notes, "NDP Leader John Horgan told reporters [yesterday] that his party and the Greens have been in negotiations. 'I'm optimistic we'll be able to put forward a framework that has a majority of the support in the legislature', he said. Horgan said it was important for his party and the Greens to work quickly, but indicated it might be a few days before any further announcement is made."

For her part, Clark says, "With 43 B.C. Liberal candidates elected as MLAs, and a plurality in the legislature, we have a responsibility to move forward and form a government." But Weaver counters, "Actually, the premier erred in that statement. The premier has a responsibility to ensure she gains the confidence of the house to form government. I would suggest that was a bit premature. We have not tested the confidence of the house yet."

Weaver has set a deadline of May 31 to reach a deal with either the NDP or the Liberals.

CTV also reports, "The writ of election will be returned to the chief electoral officer on May 31, officially ending the election period. If the Greens decide before then that they are unhappy with a Liberal minority, they could agree to a formal or informal coalition and attempt to get into power. If they choose not to form a coalition, Clark will be formally asked to lead the province."

The Council of Canadians is a non-partisan organization that endorses no political party, but rather is committed to building a peoples' movement capable of holding any government accountable to the public interest.

#bcelxn17

Brent Patterson's blog
Political Director of the Council of Canadians
[ https://canadians.org/blogs/brent-patterson ]
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Re: BC GREENS: Join NDP or Liberal??

Postby Oscar » Tue Jun 06, 2017 9:30 am

The Council of Canadians welcomes NDP-Green agreement in British Columbia

[ https://canadians.org/blog/council-cana ... h-columbia ]

May 29, 2017 - 8:14 pm

(PHOTO: Green Party leader Andrew Weaver, NDP leader John Horgan)

The Council of Canadians welcomes the agreement announced today between the NDP and the Green Party to form a minority government in British Columbia.

The morning after the May 9 provincial election in British Columbia, The Council of Canadians launched this online action alert [ https://secure.canadians.org/ea-action/ ... n.id=70001 ] calling on B.C. Green Party leader Andrew Weaver to cooperate with the B.C. NDP leader John Horgan to stop Liberal Premier Christy Clark's water-intensive, environmentally-destructive extreme energy projects.

Within hours we had helped to generate more than 1,250 emails to the two leaders.

Those e-mails came from people concerned by Clark's extreme energy agenda that includes the 890,000 barrel per day Trans Mountain pipeline (that would produce 20 to 26 million tonnes of upstream greenhouse emissions a year), proposed liquefied natural gas projects like the Pacific NorthWest LNG terminal (that would produce 11.8 to 14 million tonnes of emissions a year), and the Site C hydroelectric dam (that would produce 150,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions each year).

Global News now reports, "Following the announcement, Clark will have to recall the legislature to test the confidence of the house. If the B.C. Greens and NDP defeat the current government in a confidence motion, Clark would need to decide between resigning or asking for a new election. Also of note, the Lt.-Gov. Judith Guichon has an option of asking the Green and NDP party leaders to govern without an election."

That report adds, "Under terms of the agreement, the Greens will support the NDP’s legislative agenda on supply and budget issues, but there are no plans for anyone in Weaver’s caucus to serve in cabinet."

The details of the agreement will be released tomorrow (Tuesday May 30).

The Council of Canadians is a non-partisan organization that endorses no political party, but rather is committed to building a peoples' movement capable of holding any government accountable to the public interest.

#bcelxn17

Brent Patterson's blog
Political Director of the Council of Canadians
[ https://canadians.org/blogs/brent-patterson ]
Oscar
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Posts: 7072
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