British Columbia

The B.C. NDP leadership race

The B.C. New Democrat Party will select a new leader on April 17, with the winner replacing Carole James, who stepped down in December.

Candidate profiles

The B.C. New Democrat Party will select a new leader on April 17, with the winner replacing Carole James, who stepped down in December.

As of April 7, four candidates had entered the race, including three MLAs and a marijuana activist.

The party currently uses a one-member, one-vote election process where each member of the NDP will have an opportunity to vote. Members can vote via telephone or internet during the leadership assembly, or in advance voting. Individuals must be members of the B.C. NDP for 90 days prior to the election day in order to be eligible to vote in the leadership race.


Adrian Dix

MLA for Vancouver Kingsway

Dix was first elected as MLA for Vancouver Kingsway in May 2005 and re-elected in 2009.

Adrian Dix says he would reinstate taxes on financial institutions that the B.C. Liberals have cut. ((CBC))

Dix has experience as a non-profit director, education community leader, government strategist and media commentator. He also served as the chief of staff to Premier Glen Clark from 1996 to 1999.

His platform: Dix says as premier he would scrap the HST and resinstate taxes on financial institutions that the B.C. Liberals have cut. He would hold a public inquiry into the sale of BC Railraise the minimum wage to $10 an hour and increase it with inflation, and would work for social and economic justice, and help eliminate child poverty.


Mike Farnworth

MLA for Port Coquitlam-Burke Mountain

Farnworth was first elected as the MLA for Port Coquitlam Burke Mountain in 1991, and re-elected in 1996. He was re-elected again as MLA for this constituency in 2005 and 2009.

Mike Farnworth says he will unite the troubled B.C. NDP if he is elected party leader. ((CBC))

Farnworth was elected a councillor in Coquitlam in the 1980s. From 2001 to 2004, he worked in Bulgaria, the Balkans and most recently Iraq on democratic governance programs to help build multiparty democracies in former one-party states.

His platform: Farnworth has made it a priority to heal the split in the NDP caucus that prompted the resignation of leader Carole James. he declared when announcing his candidacy that, "The days of infighting are over and the days of healing and unity begin now."  He said he will launch a provincewide education commission, a public inquiry into the B.C. Rail scandal and would use the carbon tax to help pay for public transportation.

John Horgan

MLA for Juan de Fuca

Horgan, who has been a member of the NDP since 1983, was first elected to the legislature in 2005, serving as critic for the Ministry of Energy and Mines and the Ministry of Education.

Vancouver Island MLA John Horgan is a supporter of former B.C. NDP leader Carole James.

Before his election, Horgan served as a legislative assistant to MP Jim Manly and worked as chief of staff for interim NDP premier Dan Miller. He also started his own management consulting firm.

His platform: Horgan said he plans to protect B.C.'s natural resources, examine environmental protection in the province and develop a strategy to protect B.C.'s most vulnerable citizens. British Columbians want a government that puts citizens first, Horgan said, and invests in young people so they have the skills to help the economy flourish.

Dana Larsen

Marijuana activist

Dana Larsen was a former federal NDP candidate in West Vancouver but pulled out of the race after getting caught up in a pot-smoking controversy two years ago.

Dana Larsen says he is calling for cannabis to be legally taxed and regulated. ((CBC))

Since announcing his leadership bid, Larsen has been embroiled in a public dispute with party president Moe Sihota.

Sihota said Larsen was declared ineligible to run for the party after the 2008 federal election campaign when he had to step down as a candidate in a Vancouver-area riding after videos appeared of him smoking pot and taking LSD.

Sihota also ruled out Larsen's bid on a technicality, saying he was not a member of the party.

Despite the dispute, Larsen is still in the race.

His platform: Larsen said he wants to run on a platform of making pot legal, raising the minimum wage and reversing the privatization of B.C. Rail and BC Ferries.