British Columbia

New Green Party leader says calling a snap election during the pandemic would be 'irresponsible'

The newly elected leader of the B.C. Green party says a power-sharing agreement with the New Democrats provides necessary stability during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Sonia Furstenau replaces Andrew Weaver who stepped aside to sit as an Independent

Sonia Furstenau, the new leader of the B.C. Green Party, says the middle of a global pandemic is the wrong time to call a snap election. (Michael Mcarthur / CBC News)

The newly elected leader of the B.C. Green party says a power-sharing agreement with the New Democrats provides necessary stability during the COVID-19 pandemic.

During a news conference on her first full day on the job, Sonia Furstenau says her party is ready for a snap election but calling one now would be irresponsible.

Furstenau was part of the three-member Green caucus that signed the so-called confidence and supply agreement that allowed the minority New Democrats to form a government in 2017.

She replaces Andrew Weaver, who stepped aside in January to sit as an Independent in the legislature.

Premier John Horgan set off election speculation last week when he cited the pandemic and said the Green party he made the agreement with three years ago has changed, as has the context in which the NDP is governing.

Furstenau says she spoke on the phone Monday night with Horgan and they will follow up with a discussion about the agreement "very soon.''

"The confidence and supply agreement right now delivers stable government at a time when British Columbians need to know that their elected officials are focused on the people of this province,'' she said.

She says the leadership race created momentum within the Green party and if an election were called, they would launch a provincewide campaign.

"Of course, snap elections are a challenge, but we are absolutely up for the challenge,'' she said.

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

now