David Schreck predicted a B.C. NDP debacle two-and-a-half years before the May 14, 2013, election.
The former New Democrat MLA prophesied this outcome as the consequence of the bitter infighting that ousted Carole James as leader of the provincial NDP. James stepped down on December 6, 2010, five days after Vancouver–Mount Pleasant MLA Jenny Kwan issued a statement calling for new leadership in the party.
On that same day in 2010, Schreck told the Straight in a phone interview that the B.C. NDP has been “permanently damaged”. “This split goes to the roots of the party,” he said then.
Schreck went on to say that, as a result, the 2013 election “will be a cakewalk for the Liberals, and the NDP will be lucky if they can elect a half-dozen seats”.
According to him, Kwan and the other anti-James dissidents could have simply waited for the party’s convention in November 2011, defeated James in a leadership review, and elected a new leader in time for the 2013 general election.
“They chose a route in which the prize they’ve won they’ve made worthless,” Schreck said.
James’s December 6 statement reflected the rancour that divided the party at that time. “Over the last two months, we’ve seen some members of our caucus decide to use their time and energy infighting instead of working on behalf of British Columbians,” James said.
According to Schreck, the B.C. NDP rebel faction won a worthless victory with the ouster of James “because who would want to lead this bunch now that can’t possibly win an election?”.
In the following spring, Adrian Dix was elected as new B.C. NDP leader. Despite leading consistently in surveys, Dix lost the recent election to B.C. Liberal Premier Christy Clark.
In a December 7, 2010, phone interview with the Straight, Kwan said that Schreck was “dead wrong”.