Even though it will only take one traitor to topple B.C.’s new NDP government that’s being propped up by the Green Party, local MLA Dan Ashton says the Liberal Party won’t be making any attempts to cause animosity between their political rivals.
Ashton thinks his opponent’s fall will be self-inflicted. To see the detrimental effects of an NDP government – “Just look at what’s happening next door in Alberta,” he said, citing how the Alberta NDP government posted a $10.8 billion shortfall in its annual budget, raising the province’s total debt by 30 per cent in a single year.
“You don’t need to look too far to see what happens when you’re not fiscally responsible.”
Ashton said he has a “huge” social conscience and he’s worried the BCNDP’s spending will run amok, leaving the province in a weak position to fulfil its crucial financial obligations.
However, NDP leader John Horgan is confident that his party knows how to make the province a better place.
“This is our chance to do incredible things for the people of B.C.,” Horgan said in a mass email. “From making life more affordable, to reforming our elections, fixing essential services and growing a sustainable economy that will power our province for generations to come.”
Asked if the new NDP government might affect the outcome of the Highway 97 Transportation Study, Ashton said he hopes not. But the Okanagan Valley is the second largest growing area in the province, so the NDP should be paying close attention.
“I will be ensuring the new transportation minister knows full well what’s transpiring in Peachland regarding that,” he said, adding that he has a good working relationship with MLAs of all stripes.
However, he believes it “was not that astute” for Green Party leader Andrew Weaver to formally partner with the NDP instead of co-operating with both major parties. Had Weaver been willing to work with both parties, he could have made himself the “de facto leader of the province,” Ashton said
“If I was Mr. Weaver I would have stayed out… he’s made a decision, gone down a route and we’ll have to see what happens.”
And although the party Ashton belongs to no longer holds enough seats to call the shots, “An effective opposition member can make an awful lot of difference in the direction of the government,” he said.
“Now what needs to happen; the citizens of British Columbia sent all B.C. parties a strong message: you gotta work better together.”