Written by Nikki Hill on October 28 for our series Earnscliffe BC Election Insights.
After governing with a minority government since 2017, the BC NDP is now expected to hold a majority following a historic victory on October 24. The majority mandate gives the BC NDP Government an opportunity to build on their work over the past three and a half years with a strengthened hand. It also ensures a stable government for BC for the next four years to manage the pandemic response, see B.C. through the economic recovery, and further their platform commitments to a strong, sustainable economy that works for everyone, improved services people can rely on, and investments in housing, childcare and other core services to make life more affordable.
The BC NDP decisively dominated in the Lower Mainland, with a full sweep of the Tri Cities, coupled with dual victories in Langley ridings, a breakthrough in Abbotsford and key constituencies on the north shore. Premier Horgan and his team have become the main party of choice for those living in B.C.’s most populous areas.
Premier Horgan has already acknowledged that he needs to build relationships with voters in areas of rural BC where the BC NDP showing was not as strong as in the Lower Mainland, noting that under the minority government structure, travel was limited for the premier and caucus members. But with upwards of 45% of the popular vote, it is clear that support for Premier Horgan and his government is solid in the province.
In the coming months and years, the government will undoubtedly continue to be laser focused on pandemic management and economic recovery. Beyond managing health and safety through the pandemic, this also means continuing to support people and the industries hardest hit by the economic impact.
So what should we expect from the government over the next four years? Beyond a focus on pandemic recovery and response, we will see the BC NDP continue to pursue core policy priorities including infrastructure investment, housing, affordability, reconciliation with Indigenous peoples, childcare, good jobs, workers’ rights, strong partnership with the federal government and sound economic management.
Building a sustainable economy will be a key priority for the government that designed arguably the most ambitious climate plan in North America, CleanBC, with the BC Green caucus. The government has also signalled it will continue to support innovative solutions and responsible natural resource development as it works to meet its own aggressive emissions reductions targets and moves forward on reconciliation with Indigenous peoples.
At the core of all of this, as repeated throughout the campaign and over the last three and a half years, is a steadfast focus on people. By continuing to focus on what matters most to British Columbians, John Horgan and his team are well positioned to provide the type of leadership that will get us through the pandemic and set British Columbia on a path to prosperity for all.
To better understand what this means for stakeholders, contact our Earnscliffe team.