Yes, It Is Election Time … Again!
So it seems every couple years, we in the North join the rest of the province, the rest of the country, or our counterparts here in the North for our say in who is going to run the government for the next four years.
Some background on me if you didnt know, is that I have been in politics for almost a decade, and I have watched elections, like hockey fans watch the Stanley cup. This includes locally, provincially, nationally and internationally and every election between. I am what you would call a self confessing ‘Political Junkie’, and I mean that in a good way. I don’t watch it for the drama that now seems to be the norm like it was in the last US election, I watch it to see the will of the people; for the passion of those dedicated to what they believe.
We in Canada are very fortunate to be able to vote every four years on a local representative. We don’t have to vote for party leaders unless we are card-carrying members and they are in a mess and need a new leader between general elections; we get to vote for our friends, our neighbours, or in this case, our co-workers.
Every election I sit back and watch as the latest slogans, tag lines and promises are made, and I watch for the reaction of people. You see, every election since the dawn of time we have candidates vying for that one seat (or more if municipal) as they promise jobs, great change, and/or more and better accountability. The one thing being in politics for as long as I have has taught me, is not to believe anything anyone promises you. Instead, look at what they have done and what they are doing right now in the position we have put them in. Elections shouldn’t be about the leader of a party; that’s what formed government the day after the election is about. Elections are about who have you called or run into; who have you emailed in the last few years and expressed your concerns to; who do you trust that for the next four years you can continue doing that? Its not about the popular vote here in BC or Canada, its needs to be about your trust with one individual.
In the last paragraph I mentioned how “elections aren’t about what party, that’s what formed government is for;” I want to explain that for a moment. You see, the party during an election isn’t that important; all of these folks running in the ridings throughout this province are just people with similar ideals on free enterprise, work, schooling, social programs or unions. It is when they come together after an election to form government when that becomes vitally important. We are a two party system in BC, similiar to the United States of America. We have independents, and small second and third tier parties that do get some headway, but ultimately it is a decision between the left and the right. For an exmaple, if you are a "right" voter (Liberal or Conservative in BC under one party), but dont like the leader of the party so you vote independent, you are actually voting left (NDP). This is how vote splitting occurs when as many or more independents are running than are members of parties.
The North Peace riding hasn’t always been Liberal because of the Leader of the party, or because the colour of the flag, and it sure isn’t because of the name of the party. It is because we have been blessed with some great MLAs over time that have shared the ideals of the BC Liberal party and knew that we could get more for this region by standing as a united group than we could by standing alone.
When I was a child, my Dad, being as involved in the oil and gas industry as he was, would watch the BC and Alberta elections very closely. In those days, our livelihoods in Fort St John were made up of the votes being counted on that one night, just as they are today. In the 1990’s when the NDP was elected and formed government in British Columbia, we went from a “have” province to a “have not” province, and my Dad sat us kids down and said “we are fortunate that Alberta is Conservative and that is where I will work until BC elects a free enterprise government.” Well the sad truth is that over 50,000 people had to do the same thing during those times, and it was harder on families than anyone in those days would care to admit.
Well here we sit just over a month until BC heads to the polls once again to decide between the NDP and The BC Liberals. Dad, God rest his soul, wouldn’t know what to do if BC became the second province in the country next to Alberta to have an NDP government. I can almost hear him now, fearing Saskatchewan as the only option left viable for industry, if the voters in BC decide to follow our neighbours in Alberta.
Closer to home however, we have a full slate of candidates and each one of us will have to use our best judgement as we elect them as our voice in government for the next four years. I for one can tell you I am not voting for a color of a banner, or flag, logo, slogan or promise. I will let you in on a secret: I am voting for the same guy I voted for in four previous municipal elections. I am voting for the guy who I have sat beside for three terms of government. I am voting for the guy who I have argued with until neither of us even remembered what we were arguing about. I am voting for Dan Davies because he is the right man for the position. I am voting for Dan Davies because Fort St John and the North Peace need to be represented at the table of a formed government. My hope in turn for the oil, gas, mining, forestry and hydroelectric industries, in which hundreds upon hundreds of thousands of people depend on this free enterprise government for current and future jobs, is that you vote for those very same reasons.
Wasn’t 2016 enough of a change for us? Do we really want to have anymore drastic changes when things are just getting back to the way they were? On May 09th (the day my son turns 11), I will be voting for no promises, no slogans, no catch phrases or impressive one-liners. I will vote for experience, I will be voting for representation, I will be voting for Dan Davies.
This message was brought to you independent of any parties and was not endorsed by anyone, but me :)