It seems as though there was a tremendous amount of voters that were not pleased with the way things were going with incumbent mayors and councillors across the province in election 2022.
Thirty seven incumbent mayors were shown the door by dissatisfied voters in British Columbia.
In Metro Vancouver, seven new mayors defeated incumbents, 10 sitting mayors were re-elected and four new mayors were elected where incumbents did not run.
Of note in Metro Vancouver was the absolute blowout of Kennedy Stewart. For the past couple of months pollsters and the media have been telling us that Vancouver was a dead heat and that it was anybody’s race. As it turns out, not so much. Heavy hitters from the NDP, past and present, went out on a limb semi late in the game to endorse Stewart. This was in hindsight, probably a bad and awkward move particularly for leadership hopeful David Eby.
Voters in Vancouver were clearly unimpressed in the way in which crime, homelessness, housing and healthcare were handled by Stewart. Any thoughts about a snap election call for Eby have likely been dashed. The winds, they are a changin’!
In Surrey, incumbent Doug McCallum was told to go bye-bye by frustrated voters, mainly due to the RCMP/metro policing debacle. Although he conceded twice to Brenda Locke since Saturday night, it would appear that McCallum has changed his mind again and will be asking for a judicial recount.
In our neck of the woods, it wasn’t really close, even from early on, as Mayor George Harvie and Achieving for Delta council candidates ran the table with incumbents Alicia Guichon and Dylan Kruger toping the polls. Achieving for Delta nearly ran the table on school board as well taking six of the seven positions with long-time incumbent Nick Kanakos rounding out the trustee list.
Some people think that such a mandate for mayor and council will not afford opportunity for serious debate on several pressing city issues. There is no guarantee that will be the case. In fact, if you look back on voting records from the past term amongst the Achieving slate, you will note that there were many instances where block voting did not occur.
As Mayor Harvie noted in the Achieving for Delta victory speech, it is good news to see two of South Asian heritage on council. I am personally looking forward to a productive four years and a united City of Delta.