BC NDP’S TAKE
AT Tuesday night’s debate, BC NDP Leader John Horgan focused on his plan to support people and keep BC moving forward during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Early in the debate, Horgan pressed Andrew Wilkinson on the BC Liberal record on seniors care and how it left seniors vulnerable to COVID-19:
“You fired 10,000 people, largely women, to give a tax break to the wealthiest people in B.C… It was the wrong thing to do. It focused on people who didn’t need help, and punished those who did. That doesn’t build community, it doesn’t build our economy, and it certainly didn’t help seniors when the pandemic hit.”
When Wilkinson refused to answer the question about whether cutting seniors care was a mistake, Horgan continued:
“The consequences, Andrew, of your decisions were profound and tragic for seniors who found themselves in a pandemic without sufficient people to help them… That’s a profound mistake. I think you should acknowledge that and take responsibility for it.”
Horgan also highlighted BC’s continent leading climate plan, his economic recovery plan, and his plan to continue investing in making childcare and housing more affordable.
Horgan contrasted his own plan with Wilkinson’s, which benefits the wealthy and well-connected. On housing, Horgan noted that Wilkinson’s plan would:
“… eliminate the speculation tax so the speculators that used to support the BC Liberals can get back to the good old days – the wild west of driving up costs. The speculation tax has meant that 11,000 condominiums that were vacant are now being populated by renters. That’s bringing down costs for regular people. And you know full well that if you give back to the 1% that are affected by the spec tax, $115 million, we’ll have no money to build the housing that we need. It works for everybody and it’s very popular, except with BC Liberals.”
BC LIBERALS’ TAKE
TUESDAY night’s debate between the three party leaders conclusively showed that only the BC Liberals have a plan to restore confidence and rebuild British Columbia.
“John Horgan couldn’t or wouldn’t answer the most basic questions and that just goes to show he can’t be trusted,” said Petra Veintimilla, the BC Liberal candidate for Boundary-Similkameen. “This is the guy who plunged us into a pandemic election so he could try and grab more power. He didn’t offer any new ideas, except for a $1,000 bribe, and simply reintroduced all of his broken promises from the last election.”
BC Liberal Leader Andrew Wilkinson spoke directly to voters about how the province’s economic health can be rebuilt, and reinforced the BC Liberal party’s record of keeping its promises and building people up.
“British Columbians deserve a leader and a government we can trust to help us immediately, that will put money in our pockets now, keep our neighbourhoods safe, give us a choice when it comes to auto insurance, keep seniors in their homes longer, and put forward a real plan for child care that targets those who need it most,” added BC Liberal candidate for Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows Cheryl Ashlie. “That’s what Andrew shared with British Columbians tonight, in contrast to Horgan huffing and puffing and refusing to answer the most basic questions.”
BC GREEN PARTY’S TAKE
SONIA Furstenau, Leader of the B.C. Greens, made the case for a more accountable, balanced legislature in the leadership debate tonight. She demonstrated again and again why the Greens have been essential to advancing solutions in the B.C Legislature and why British Columbians would benefit from electing them again.
Furstenau showed that the B.C. Greens are the only voice that is simultaneously attuned to the overlapping public health, inequality and climate crisis we face. She made the argument for immediate relief to help people, small businesses and the tourism sector as they navigate a difficult winter, as well as the need to build a more sustainable, resilient province to ensure B.C’s long-term security and stability.
While Horgan and Wilkinson defended their records on the Site C boondoggle and increasing greenhouse gas emissions, Furstenau made the case for a clean recovery from COVID-19 that does not exacerbate the climate crisis.
With the overlapping crises we face, Furstenau demonstrated why we need the compassionate, collaborative leadership that the B.C. Greens bring.