Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Saxton takes close to half of North Vancouver vote

By Jeremy Shepherd, North Shore News May 3, 2011

Saxton won the riding with 28,998 votes, taking almost 49 per cent of the total.
Saxton defeated Liberal challenger Taleeb Noormohamed, who finished with 17,665 votes. NDP candidate Michael Charrois finished in third place with 9,618 votes.
All numbers are unofficial until certified by Elections Canada. Asked what Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s first majority government will mean for him, Saxton replied: “It means that maybe I’ll start looking for an apartment in Ottawa.”
Saxton attributed the Conservative victory to Harper’s leadership during what Saxton called, “The great recession.” Saxton thanked the three levels of government in North Vancouver for working together through different political affiliations to support infrastructure in the riding. Shaking hands under a black and blue sky, Saxton said he looked forward to working with the new official Opposition led by NDP leader Jack Layton. “I work out with him in the same gym in Ottawa and I can tell you he’s a feisty guy, and he’ll keep us on our toes.” Asked if he slept the night before the election, Saxton said: “I did sleep last night, but I may not sleep tonight,” before offering to buy a drink for all his supporters and campaign workers.

Taleeb Noormohamed, holding court in a noticeably more sombre campaign office just up the street, attributed his loss to the division among moderates and left-wing voters. “If progressive-minded folks had rallied together, we would’ve taken this riding by a large number,” he said. Asked about the future of Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff, Noormohamed said the party needs to go in another direction. “It comes down to connecting with Canadians,” he said. “It’s pretty clear the party needs to revitalize itself.” Noormohamed, who had just congratulated Saxton on winning after a “clean campaign,” said Saxton’s first priority should be freeing the North Vancouver man who’s been in a jail in Mexico without trial for three years. “I think job 1 is to get Pavel Kulisek home,” he said.

NDP candidate Michael Charrois had a one-word summation of his party’s performance in becoming the official Opposition: “Wow.” “We’ve increased 100 per cent,” he said.
Asked about the drop in support for the Liberal party, Charrois said Ignatieff was unable to rise above the image Conservatives painted of the party leader. “Harper framed Ignatieff, and he couldn’t get out of the frame,” he said. Asked about acrimony on the campaign trail, Charrois said he’s learned to take things in stride. “Take a breath, it’s not personal.” Despite the loss, Charrois said his campaign isn’t over. “It’s not over till we clean up. Just like camping, leave no trace,” he said, referring to campaign signs and posters.

Despite finishing with just five per cent of the riding’s votes, Green Party candidate Greg Dowman was jubilant following the election. “We made it,” he said, discussing Green Party leader Elizabeth May’s victory in the Saanich-Gulf Islands riding. “It was the dedication of Elizabeth and her crew, and they just pounded it,” he said. Dowman attributed May’s victory to an increasing number of voters looking for leadership on environmental issues like climate change. Dowman said he hoped for a greater sense of accountability in government and greater decorum in Parliament, which he said had been characterized by “childish” behaviour. “These guys are throwing mud pies at each other,” he said.Dowman said he was optimistic for his chances in the next election. “Given an improvement in the machinery, we can do even better next time.”


© Copyright (c) North Shore News


Mocrael said...

Glad we have a majority government this time around. My daughter, who is still not quite 24 years old, has voted in her third federal election already. That alone should speak volumes...

So many positive changes:more women in parliament ; more young people; and a one lone, but very strong environmental voice.

The next four years should prove very interesting.Congratulations to Andrew Saxton.

John Sharpe said...

Yes Congratulations to Andrew.

With all due respect Mocrael as I know your whole family probably voted Conservative, I don't buy into Harper's spiel about the "bickering" and "an unecessary election" on Parliament Hill. He sold this card to the electorate and it seems they fell for it.
The "bickering" or as I'd like to call it discussion, is our democracy and I'm glad we have it.

It's great to see more balance in the gender, younger voices, and to finally see a Green voice elected in North America.

I believe however that the "interesting" next four years will be a "you asked for it".

I hope that Mr. Layton can do a good job of trying to keep things in check.

Anonymous said...

The Liberals precipitated the election by joining with the socialists and the separatists in defeating the budget.

What a pie in the face for the Liberals. What a boomerang.

The silly "you asked for it" comment is the latest nonsense from the left. The creeks will still run downhill, we will still live in the best city in the world, and the sky will not fall.

A stable government in an unstable world. Are we lucky!

Anonymous said...

John, what you fail to grasp is that the people did indeed "ask for it" because they were sick and tired of wannabee residents of 24 Sussex Drive pushing the envelope to suit their own agendas and egos. And for that, they got exactly what they asked for.

I worked one of the polls where Saxton got approximately 50% of the vote and a comment I heard more than once, as people put their ballots in the box was "let's hope this puts an end to the nonsense for the next four years."

So John, I think your words, "you asked for it" may be more appropriately directed towards Mr. Layton because I think he will be gobsmacked when he finds out what the Quebec people will expect in return for their votes, and even more frustrated trying to find the talent among his greener-than-grass newly minted MPs.

And despite having more than double the seats, he actually has significantly less clout in Parliament.

Interesting times...very interesting.

mocrael said...

I can assure you, John, my whole family did not vote Conservative. I can't line up all my kids like "ducks in a row", you know ;) We had some interesting discussions.

Anonymous said...

"If you're not a liberal when you're 20, you have no heart. If
you're not a conservative when you're 40, you have no head."

John Sharpe said...

Winston Churchill quoted, nice.

Interesting times to say the least.

I actually don't trust any of the parties on Parliament Hill but, I trust Harper the least and that's why I'd have preferred him with a minority. Things still get done in a minority government, maybe just not the way conservatives want them done.
I don't find it inconvenient to vote at any time we are called upon to do so. That's Democracy.

Colin said...

I worked the polls and banged on doors May 2nd, people are fed up with elections. As for Taleeb, he did very well and if he sticks to building his base can be a serious threat to Andrew in another 4 years. My dad is a serious NDP supporter, while I supported Saxton so we both were very happy about the results. The NDP has some serious work cut out for them and this is their make or break moment for the party, question period should be quite interesting.

Anonymous said...

Looking forward to the conservative bill to add 30 MPs.

BC 7 more
Alberta 5 more
Ontario 18 more

It's a pity that some provinces have a guaranteed minimum.

PEI with a population of 143,000 has a guaranteed 4 MPs which allows for an average of 35,750 pop per PEI MP.

Quebec with a pop of 7,975,000 has 75 MPs for an average of 106,333 pop.

BC with a pop of 4,554,000 has 36 MPs for an average of 126,500 but after the additional seats are added it will be 43 MPs for an average of one per 105,906 pop.

So after the realignment both BC and Quebec would have a representation of about 1 MP per 106,000 of population. Apparently Quebec doesn't like the plan and thinks that it is unfair. They would like a "guaranteed" representation of 25% of the House even though their population is not 25% of Canada's pop and is declining as a % of the total.

Gotta love the Cons.

Anonymous said...

I think Taleeb has a great future somewhere, just not in politics. By the time the next election rolls around, he will be on to much greener pastures and the Liberals will trot out another contender. As for the NDP, I think Layton has his work cut out for him with his band of merry-makers, and I wouldn't be surprised if we see some interesting things happening in Quebec--results overturned, resignations, and by-elections. I am amazed that Quebecers voted en masse for a bunch of people they didn't know or bother to even research. Are they lemmings?

John Sharpe said...

"I worked the polls and banged on doors May 2nd, people are fed up with elections".

Not a surprizing 'sentiment' assuming you canvassed in North Vancouver tht was swept by the blue machine.

Probably time for what's left of the Liberals to 'cross the floor' to the NDP. These two parties share many of the same social-democratic values anyways. The Trudeau-Broadbent was an era where they had agreement in some areas.

I can't wait for question period as well.

Anonymous said...

John, we agree that the Libs should cross the floor. Also agree that many Libs are the "red" Liberals and would be quite comfortable in the NDP.

However, there are also "blue" Liberals (Paul Martin comes to mind) that would fit quite happily into the Conservative fold which also has a wide spectrum of supporters from "pink" Conservatives on the left all the way to the far right with the majority somewhere in the middle.

That would certainly define the playing field. Socialists and labour on the left and free enterprise/conservative fiscal policies on the right.

Frankly we might not miss the Liberals at all.

John Sharpe said...

If the Greens could get voter momentum up, take a few of the old NDP seats, a shift could occur to a Green-Liberal-Democrat Party opposition instead of the traditional Lib-NDP. Not that too far fetched.
I wouldn't miss the Liberals either.

Anonymous said...

That suggestion could be to the advantage of the Greens who are unlikely to garner enough elected MPs in the foreseeable future to make much of a ripple in parliament but could have a viable faction within a Liberal Democrat party.

On the other hand I don't think that it is incompatible to have a Green voice within the Conservatives either.

Today's stereotypical Green seems more likely to be sympatico with a left-wing supporter.

That's not cast in stone and tomorrow's Green could be a highly sophisticated business person with an environmental conscience. I'm watching Warren Buffet, Bill Gates and a lot of their billionaire colleagues give away much of their fortunes for ecological and humanitarian purposes.

Conservative Greens? An interesting proposition.

John Sharpe said...

"Today's stereotypical Green seems more likely to be sympatico with a left-wing supporter".

I think that's mostly because the left-wing parties tend to have an environmental platform that concurs with the Greens. Pretty hard for the Greens to be on board with a Conservative gov't that isn't supportive of a Kyoto Accord. That, among many other issues.

Anonymous said...

The reasons for lack of support to Kyoto are well documented and have been debated extensively.

The left and right are unlikely to concur in the moment but that's OK as Kyoto is one point in time and not set in stone.

Evolving technological advances and scientific evidence will produce new points of discussion and amendments or entire rewrites of future environmental agreements that may allow conservative support.

If corporate billionaires can move then so can politicians.

Personally I would welcome green participation inside a conservative framework.

Colin said...

I have dealt with rural based Greens up North, they have their head far more firmly screwed on then their urban cousins. They understand that a balance is needed between the environment and resource extraction is needed. I would say it’s possible for them to become disenchanted with the current Green party and might be willing to be recruited. The Liberals were big on “green announcements” but it was all for show and money was sucked out of the programs as soon as the media spotlight moved away. Keep in mind it was a Conservative government that turned down the Prosperity Mine despite the BC Liberals supporting it.