This Monday, with just four days to go before the deadline for candidates to file their registration papers for the October 20 municipal election, Vision Vancouver’s mayoral candidate, Ian Campbell, suddenly pulled out of the race. He did so issuing a brief statement, refusing to take any calls or interviews from the media.
What does all this mean for this fall’s municipal election?
Vision Vancouver — Vancouver’s dominant civic party for the last 10 years — is in very deep trouble.
Only 1 of its incumbent city councillors is running for re-election. And now the party has no mayoral candidate. To top things off, Vision is only running 5 candidates for the 10 city council spots. It was unable to round up enough qualified candidates to fill all the vacancies Vision incumbents are leaving behind as they exit council, school board and park board.
Why did Ian Campbell withdraw so suddenly? Perhaps it was the polling. Recent polls have Vision Vancouver in 4th place behind the Green Party, COPE and the NPA. Or perhaps it was some yet-to-be disclosed personal issue. All of this is likely to become clearer someday, but for the time being we’re all left in the dark.
If Vision was not already in deep trouble as we move ever closer to voting day October 20, they are in even deeper trouble without a flag bearer.
In any civic election campaign, your mayoral candidate is the spokesperson for the entire party. It’s much harder for a party to get press coverage and profile without a mayoral candidate.
Carlito Pablo’s recent article in the Georgia Straight describes more fuel being added to the fire. The Vancouver and District Labour Council, a powerhouse in Vancouver’s political scene, has cautioned Vision against fielding a new mayoral candidate.
As things currently stand, I predict that Vision Vancouver will be very lucky to elect just 1 city councillor this fall. Ditto for school and park boards. At long last the all-powerful Vision Vancouver, now just a shadow of its former self, is about to be swept out the door by the electorate, as it rightfully should be.
I say good riddance!
Remember, voting day is October 20. Advance voting is October 10–17. Check to see if you’re already registered, and or find more 2018 election info here!