Green Party MLA Andrew Weaver speaks at event with federal party leader Elizabeth May and interim B.C. party leader Adam Olsen.

Green MLA Weaver to seek leadership

UVic professor Andrew Weaver kept his options open for two years, but now says he wants to lead B.C. Green Party into 2017 election

He took a pay cut to go from the tranquil groves of academe to the bare-knuckle brawl of B.C. politics, but Andrew Weaver says he’s ready to lead the B.C. Green Party into the next election.

The first-term Oak Bay-Gordon Head MLA told reporters at the legislature this week he made up his mind over the Christmas holidays to carry on with his political career, after two years of keeping his options open.

Weaver said he will stand for the leadership of the party as it tries to consolidate its Vancouver Island foothold of one provincial and one federal seat, held by federal Green Party leader Elizabeth May. He said that leadership vote likely won’t be until 2016, to prepare for the next scheduled B.C. election in 2017.

A mathematician specializing in climate models, Weaver took political leave from the faculty of the University of Victoria to run in the 2013 election, and defeated former B.C. Liberal cabinet minister Ida Chong. He went from a $180,000 job at UVic to $101,000 as an MLA.

Weaver declined to seek the leadership after winning the party’s first-ever B.C. seat, and the party appointed Saanich North and the Islands candidate Adam Olsen as interim leader instead. Olsen has indicated he will run again in the seat where he came close in 2013, with voters who supported May in the last federal election.

Despite the marginal role given independent MLAs, Weaver has made an impression on the government and the opposition NDP. Premier Christy Clark has taken to praising his ideas, such as his call to replace flat-rate Medical Services Plan premiums with a system that shifts more of the cost to high-income earners.

Clark ruled that out for the February budget, but said Weaver’s suggestions are refreshing after the negative rhetoric of the NDP.

NDP leader John Horgan said promoting Weaver is just more political tactics by Clark.

“I think they’re trying to draw attention away from us, who I think are doing a relatively effective job, and trying to put a spotlight on someone who may well cut our grass over the long term,” Horgan said.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19: Modified beach volleyball a hit in Parksville

Organizer happy to get popular summer game going

Ballenas students help keep essential community services going

Club donates $1,000 to SOS Grateful Hearts campaign

Rebound recovery program helps more than 50 PQB businesses remain open

Nearly $90K in aid received through Oceanside Initiatives plan

B.C. records 146 new COVID-19 cases through long weekend

More that 28 people tested positive for the virus each day since Friday

Dwindling B.C. bamboo supply leaves Calgary Zoo biologists worried about pandas

Zoo has been trying to send pandas back to China since May

Dinosaurs revived for animatronic auction in Langley

More than 500 robot dinosaurs, fossils, and exhibition gear are going on the block Aug. 6

B.C. paramedics responded to a record-breaking 2,700 overdose calls in July

Province pledges $10.5 million for expansion of overdose prevention response

Canada signs deals with Pfizer, Moderna to get doses of COVID-19 vaccines

Earlier in July both Pfizer and Moderna reported positive results from smaller trials

Canucks tame Minnesota Wild 4-3 to even NHL qualifying series

J.T. Miller leads Vancouver with goal and an assist

Cyclist in hospital after being hit by load of lumber hanging from truck on B.C. highway

A man is in hospital with broken ribs, punctured lung and a broken clavicle and scapula

COVID-19 vaccine efforts provide hope but no silver bullet to stop pandemic: Tam

There are more than two dozen vaccines for COVID-19 in clinical trials around the world

Most Read