According to B.C. Green party deputy leader Damian Kettlewell, it is only a matter of time until Greens are elected to the B.C. legislature.
In a telephone interview with the Straight, Kettlewell, the party’s candidate in Vancouver-False Creek, railed against what he argued is a “bias” held by “certain media journalists” against the Green party.
“We’re being kept out of debates on Global TV right now, we’re being kept out of morning debates on Global News, and we’re not included on the Voice of B.C. tonight [April 23] with Vaughn Palmer,” Kettlewell said yesterday. “There is a bias by some folks, and we need to change that.”
Representatives of Global News and Voice of B.C. did not return the Straight’s messages today (April 24).
CBC's Wayne Williams, spokesperson for the upcoming leadership debate hosted by CBC, CTV, and Global, told the Straight that B.C. Green party leader Jane Sterk is scheduled to participate in the May 3 event. He said that the decision to include Sterk was based on the number of candidates the Greens are fielding and on the party's performance in the last provincial election.
Kettlewell argued that the Green party’s role in provincial politics is often overlooked. He noted that it was the Green party which first proposed a tax on carbon in B.C., a policy that the Liberals introduced in February 2008. “Our policies continue to be borrowed by other parties and we encourage that,” he said.
Kettlewell conceded that there are challenges facing the Green party. The first is running campaigns without the “deep pockets” of the Liberals and NDP. “The Liberals have big business, the NDP has big labour, and the Green party has small business,” Kettlewell said. “So we don’t have the well-oiled campaign machines.”
But the Greens are working on it, Kettlewell continued. He described the party as a former “band of activists” which, over the last 26 years, has matured into a “promising political party”.
On April 19, Ray Lam, the NDP candidate in Vancouver-False Creek, dropped out of the race after “inappropriate” photos posted on Facebook were made public. The NDP was forced to nominate Jordan Parente in a last-minute maneuver which left the party’s chance of a win in Vancouver-False Creek looking slimmer.
Kettlewell said that with the NDP all but out of the picture, he is in a two-way race with Liberal candidate Mary McNeil, a contest he maintained he stands a good chance of winning.
On April 23, Kettlewell noted, he was endorsed by Conservation Voters of B.C., a self-described nonpartisan organization which focuses on the environment. CVBC claims to have seen 29 of the last 36 candidates it has endorsed get elected in recent federal, provincial, and municipal contests.
“We need to stay with it,” Kettlewell said. “I have no interest in ever getting involved in any other political party. Live and die Green.”
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