Former mayor Sam Sullivan confirms B.C. Liberal bid in Vancouver-False Creek

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Former mayor Sam Sullivan has confirmed his intention to run for provincial politics.

At a news conference in downtown Vancouver today (November 9), Sullivan officially announced he will seek the B.C. Liberal nomination in Vancouver-False Creek. The current MLA for the riding, health minister Margaret MacDiarmid, is not seeking re-election.

Sullivan said he’s been encouraged by “several people” over the past couple of months to consider entering B.C. politics.

“I looked at my e-mail trail, and I saw my first e-mail...and I gave a one-word response: no. I got a few more, and a few more—eventually I agreed to have lunch to talk about it,” he told reporters.

Sullivan, who was mayor from 2005 to 2008, noted he also had a “good conversation” with Premier Christy Clark about his candidacy. Sullivan beat Clark for the NPA mayoral nomination before he was elected in 2005.

“She certainly was very open to my candidacy and...it really is my admiration for her that is part of the reason that I am putting myself forward,” he said.

Sullivan maintained that despite recent poll results that have seen the B.C. Liberals lagging behind the NDP, he does “not believe the chatterers”.

“I believe that the B.C. Liberal Party is strong, and I believe that by the time the election comes around, there will be quite a different situation,” he stated. "I think about my election battles against former adversaries—I always started from behind."

Several NPA members attended Sullivan’s news conference this morning, including Suzanne Anton, who is seeking the B.C. Liberal nomination in Vancouver-Quilchena, city councillor Elizabeth Ball, and former councillor BC Lee.

No other B.C. Liberal candidates have yet declared their intention to run against Sullivan. However, former Vancouver-Burrard MLA Lorne Mayencourt is rumoured to be considering a bid in the riding.

Two candidates are running for the B.C. NDP nomination in Vancouver-False Creek. Vision Vancouver park board commissioner Constance Barnes will compete against digital-media entrepreneur Matt Toner at a nomination meeting on November 17.

Prior to being elected as mayor in 2005, Sullivan was a city councillor with the Non-Partisan Association for 12 years. He lost the NPA nomination for mayor in 2008 to Peter Ladner, who was defeated in the municipal election that year by current Vancouver mayor Gregor Robertson.

Sullivan is currently an adjunct professor at the UBC School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture, and the founder of the Global Civic Policy Society, which has held public salons featuring speakers on a range of topics. He is also an advocate for people with disabilities, and founded The Sam Sullivan Disability Foundation.

Earlier today, lawyer David Eby also made an announcement that he will run for provincial politics next spring.

Eby is set to be acclaimed as the B.C. NDP candidate in Premier Clark’s riding of Vancouver Point Grey. Eby also ran against Clark during the May 2011 by-election.

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Sarah B

Nov 9, 2012 at 4:50pm

Horrifying. But apt, for the Liberal party. It's about time they changed their name to the Neoliberal Party though.

5 9 Rating: -4

Daniel_Tseghay

Nov 9, 2012 at 4:51pm

Margaret MacDiarmid is the MLA for Vancouver-Fairview. Mary McNeil is the current MLA for Vancouver-False Creek.

5 8 Rating: -3

James Blatchford

Nov 9, 2012 at 8:24pm

Sadly, Sam Sullivan would fit right in in a Christy Clark government. Partisan and spiteful during his time as mayor, Sam could fit in nicely as the next Kevin Krueger; albeit a more soft spoken one. Oh, to dream of another 4 years of Christy Clark..

8 5 Rating: +3

Sandra G

Nov 10, 2012 at 9:51am

Sam is an experienced and open minded politician. He is an out of the box thinker who will take a fresh look at problems. He is known for being inclusive and for working with people on all sides of the political spectrum who have opinions that differ from his own. Sam is a thinker. He will not dismiss something just because he may disagree with it. Sam lives in the riding of False Creek and cares passionately about it. False Creek is lucky to have him seeking the nomination.

7 7 Rating: 0

Darren_S

Nov 10, 2012 at 10:01am

This is good for the BC Liberals. Vancouver False Creek is a dense and complex riding. Who better than a mayor to understand and represent it?

12 8 Rating: +4

Ivan Ilyich

Nov 10, 2012 at 10:12am

This guy became mayor due to confusion on the ballot with a Jim Green and a James Green vote split.

The Olympic Village remains part of the disastrous financial legacy created by Sam Sullivan's NPA. The developers got paid and now the taxpayers are left on the hook.

For Sam, it's quite simple really. This guy just wants another pension steam. We're the hosts and the leaders aspire to be the ever greater parasites.

9 4 Rating: +5

Cris W

Nov 10, 2012 at 10:53am

Sam is exactly what the Liberal Party needs - a fresh thinker!

I find it funny how some people lash out at Sam's ideas and then adopt them for themselves.

When Sam coined the term EcoDensity there was an initial backlash. Today both parties in civic government agree that making Vancouver denser while paying attention to the environment and quaility of life it the key.

6 7 Rating: -1

Cris W

Nov 10, 2012 at 12:33pm

Sam will bring a strong voice to Victoria on urban issues. We need someone in Victoria who understands the challenges facing our ciities.

Stephen

Nov 10, 2012 at 5:35pm

Sam made a hash of his three years as mayor, mishandling the CUPE negotiations, as a result of which the city endured a needlessly long garbage strike, and then saddling local ratepayers with the Olympic Village fiasco.

There is one point in his favour, though. As a self confessed admirer of Ayn Rand, he could become the intellectual leader of the neo-con wing of the BC Liberal caucus. Here's to the return to elective office of Vancouver's own Dr. Strangelove.

8 4 Rating: +4

Green Thumb

Nov 12, 2012 at 10:53am

Noooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!

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