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British Columbians going to the polls Oct. 24

By Hannah Scott, Local Journalism Initiative reporter

Published 12:01 PDT, Mon September 21, 2020

After weeks of speculation, BC Premier John Horgan announced the province will head to the polls Oct. 24.

After a meeting with Lieutenant Governor Janet Austin, Horgan revealed she granted his request to dissolve the Legislative Assembly. The election was previously set for Oct. 16, 2021. 

“I’ve struggled mightily with this decision and it did not come easy to me,” said Horgan.

He said an early election is necessary because the pandemic is beginning now, not ending. Delaying the decision, he added, will create more uncertainty, instability and speculation.

“Twelve months to wait for the next election is time wasted,” he said. 

Horgan said the summer session of parliament was a challenging one, with several pieces of legislation not passing because the Green party caucus did not vote in favour. 

“Particularly this summer, it was clear to me that there is a great divide between the two sides,” he said. “I cannot imagine 12 more months of bickering.”

He said there are at least 15 MLAs who have indicated they will not run again, including members of all parties. 

Responding to safety concerns, Horgan said there will be options for advancing voting and mail-in ballots. He said he has discussed possibilities with provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, as well as Elections BC, to ensure people are not putting themselves at risk and can vote safely.

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