British Columbia will soon have a new Premier heading up a more progressive government following today’s decision by the province’s Lieutenant Governor Judith Guichon to ask New Democratic Party Leader John Horgan to form a government.
Horgan’s caucus reached a confidence and supply agreement a few weeks ago with the BC Greens that paved the way for the ouster of Christy Clark and the reigning BC Liberals, who have been running the province for a decade and a half and are major boosters of the fossil fuels industry, despite their name.
The BC Liberals attempted to hang on to power by going through the motion’s of preparing and offering a Speech from The Throne, but in the end, Clark’s government lost the inevitable vote of confidence (held today) and she was compelled to resign as custom demands.
Clark has confirmed that she advised Guichon to dissolve the Legislative Assembly and call new elections. But the Lieutenant Governor declined to do so.
“As Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia, and as the representative of Her Majesty the Queen of Canada, I have met with Premier Clark and will accept her resignation,” Guichon said in a statement published a short time ago. “I have asked Mr. Horgan to form a government, he having assured me that he can form a government which will have the confidence of the Legislative Assembly.”
“Today British Columbians finally have the change they voted for,” tweeted Horgan after meeting with Guichon at Government House in Victoria.
“Thank you to everyone who got us here. The hard work starts now.”
Horgan is expected to be sworn in as Premier relatively soon. He also must get to work forming his cabinet, which will run the province as a minority government.
The B.C. Greens were equally pleased with the developments.
“After seven long weeks, I am delighted that British Columbians will finally have a new government,” said Green Leader Andrew Weaver in a statement.
“When we launched our election campaign, we promised to do politics differently. Our Confidence and Supply Agreement [with the NDP] lays the groundwork for a new kind of collaborative, productive parliament.”
“The B.C. Green caucus will provide stability for this new minority government by supporting confidence and supply measures. We have also agreed to collaborate on a wide range of policies that are supported by a majority of British Columbians. As an opposition caucus, we will collaborate with our colleagues on both sides of the house to advance good public policy that will put the interests of British Columbians first, as well as hold the government to account for their decisions and actions.
“On May 9, British Columbians sent us a strong signal that they want us to work together – no party was given a majority of seats and 100% of the power. I am encouraged that the leaders of both other parties have acknowledged this.”