Kamloops MLAs-elect break silence on potential power shift

By Jill Sperling
May 31, 2017 - 6:30pm

KAMLOOPS — It was only three weeks ago Liberal MLAs elect Todd Stone and Peter Milobar were celebrating their party's victory in the provincial election. 

Winning 43 seats, the Liberals secured a minority government, but a four year agreement between the NDP and Green Party could cause a political power shift. 

"Obviously you always hope to be in government," Milobar said. "we will be for a very short time, how long is yet to be determined." 

Premier Christy Clark has opted to bring forward a throne speech, which will be voted on by the 87 members of the Legislative Assemble. 

"We're under no illusions that it is highly likely that the throne speech will be defeated in the Legislature," Stone said. "At that point it will be up to the Lieutenant Governor to determine next steps. Her options will be to call another election or to ask Mr. Horgan and Mr. Weaver to form a government on the basis of the agreement they have signed." 

If the latter happens, it will be the first time since the early 1900s that the local MLAs do not represent the governing party. 

"It's been a very long time since Kamloops, whether it's was a one-seat constituency or two constituencies here, it's been a very long time since Kamloops has not had a representative in government," Stone said. "And, again, there's still some process to unfold here to determine if that bellwether status of Kamloops that has held for so long will actually be maintained or not."

Either way, both Stone and Milobar say they're ready to take up the role of opposition should they be required to do so. 

"There will be more work for Todd and I to do if we wind up in opposition," Milobar said. "We'll tackle that." 

"If indeed Peter and I find ourselves in opposition we'll be the strongest opposition in the history of British Columbia facing the weakest government in the history of British Columbia," Stone said, adding, "we will do everything in our power to make sure the interests of our constituents in this part of our beautiful province are heard loud and clear in Victoria."

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