Liberals vote to change way leader is selected

NORTHWESTERN provincial Liberals joined a province wide wave of support this afternoon to change the way they're going to vote for their next leader.

  • Feb. 12, 2011 2:00 p.m.
SKEENA Liberal constituency association member Leydi Noble and association president Donny van Dyk prepare for today's vote which changed how the party's next leader will be chosen.

SKEENA Liberal constituency association member Leydi Noble and association president Donny van Dyk prepare for today's vote which changed how the party's next leader will be chosen.

NORTHWESTERN provincial Liberals joined a province wide wave of support this afternoon to change the way they’re going to vote for their next leader.

All 59 of the people who cast their votes this afternoon at a session in Terrace approved of the change, reports Skeena provincial Liberal constituency association president Donny van Dyk.

Province wide, the tally was 1,319 for and just 23 people opposed.

“Weighted vote passes,” said van Dyk of the result.

The party’s next leader now won’t be chosen by the traditional method of one member/one vote.

Instead, each of the party’s constituency association’s will have 100 points which will then be divided up by how each candidate does by voting within each association.

It means one riding with several thousand members can’t overpower ridings, typically in the north and rural areas, who have far fewer members.

Van Dyk called the result a sign that the provincial Liberals place as much value in the areas outside of the lower mainland as they do in the lower mainland.

“This speaks very much for how the party regards support from all areas – rural and northern BC,” he said.

Van Dyk said northwestern Liberals and ones elsewhere were taken aback by the result.

“It’s humungous. The scale is just huge,” he said.

Members will gather again Feb. 26 to choose someone to replace Gordon Campbell.

The new leader will also become the next premier of BC because the Liberals form the majority in the provincial legislature.