The resignation of B.C. Liberal leader Christy Clark creates more stability in the legislature, says the NDP caucus chairman.
Clark announced on Friday her intention to resign both as her party’s leader and as MLA for Kelowna West. Rich Coleman was announced as interim party leader.
Nanaimo NDP MLA Leonard Krog wasn’t entirely surprised, saying he expected Clark’s resignation would come sooner rather than later.
“Simply because in leadership-focused politics, when you lose and the campaign has focused on you, generally speaking you’re not going to stay around very long … She’s taking responsibility for the Liberal election loss and giving her party a chance for renewal. It’s no big surprise.”
Clark and the B.C. Liberals won the most seats in B.C.’s election in May, but fell short of a majority and NDP leader John Horgan was sworn in as new premier two weeks ago.
Krog said he hadn’t heard about any Liberal caucus pressure on Clark to resign, but “one doesn’t expect other caucus members to disclose things that are private. Certainly there were public reports of Liberal MLAs who felt the [former] premier should go.”
Krog said Clark’s move doesn’t greatly change the mathematics in the legislature as the seat count is still closely split, but will be felt in other ways.
“It’s an implicit gift in terms of legislative stability, because there will now be a one-seat margin benefit that wasn’t there before,” he said.
Michelle Stilwell, B.C. Liberal MLA for Parksville-Qualicum, was not available for comment by deadline, but tweeted a reaction to Clark’s announcement on Friday:
“B.C. is stronger because of [Christy Clark’s] leadership. Determined. Tenacious. Strong. Kind. Advocate. Forever friend. Thank you.”