Yodel-ay-ee-hoo are you?

Posted in BC Votes 2009 Campaign Bytes Posted by CBC News on April 28, 2009 11:20 AM |

Campaign BytesJeff DaviesApril 28, Kimberley - Gordon Campbell strolls the Bavarian platzl - or square - in this East Kootenay town and strikes up a conversation with a man who introduces himself as a yodeler. It's the sort of sound bite radio reporters dream about. Adi Unterberger raises his voice and warbles to the mountains. Then he invites the Liberal leader to join him. The two yodel a little duet as reporters and camera crews crowd around. Is this too good to be true? One reporter grumbles privately the yodeler must be a plant. Really? After Campbell moves on, Unterberger makes some comments to CBC News that sound decidely more pragmatic than anything one would expect from a Liberal plant.

He tells us Campbell is "a nice guy" and he hopes he makes it. But Unterberger says the community is divided fifty-fifty. Asked about the impact of the closure of the Sullivan Mine, and later the closure of the Kimberley hospital during the Liberals' first term, Unterberger says, " No question about that. It was devastating for us here. They closed three schools here. Overall it was not a very good scene for us here." Later, Campbell visits a cafe and chats amicably with the mayor of Kimberley and some fellow diners. But one elderly gentelman, as he leaves the cafe, mutters to me that Campbell is, "a waste of skin, as far as I'm concerned." Clearly, memories of the hospital closure are still fresh here.

Jeff Davies
CBC News Vancouver