Videos: In his first news conference as NDP leader, Adrian Dix says his party can win the next election
In his first news conference since winning the B.C. NDP leadership, Adrian Dix said that he plans to offer voters a "clear agenda" on the economy in the next election. That includes a ban on the export of raw logs.
In addition, Dix said that he will roll back increases in long-term care fees for seniors. He claimed that these higher fees were introduced by the B.C. Liberal government to offset subsidies to banks.
Measures like these, he declared, will lead his party to victory in the next provincial election.
"It will be by ensuring we have a public health-care system that's worthy of its name—that seniors don't have the worst level of care standards in long-term care in Canada," Dix noted.
He also promised to offer clear direction with his party's educational policies, including telling voters where the NDP stands on class size and class composition.
"We're going to stop fighting with teachers and start working with teachers to make classrooms better—teachers and parents and students," he said.
Adrian Dix explains how the NDP can win the next election.
He also expressed opposition to the proposed Enbridge pipeline, which would bring oil from the Alberta tar sands to Kitimat for export through Queen Charlotte Sound. In addition, Dix said that he's opposed to offshore oil and gas development.
Some pundits have taken pot shots at Dix for his serious demeanour, but he offered no regrets about this.
"There's no joking around on issues of children in care," he said. "I think a lot of people got to know me in politics through that issue. I make no apologies for being serious about those things."
At the same time, Dix said he can have fun like everyone else. And to satisfy the Vancouver newspapers, he half-jokingly promised to smile more often.
But then he got serious again, pointing out that politicians should be telling stories about people being on waitlists for infant development. And when this is done properly, he believes it will lead to electoral success.
"You're going to win elections because you're going to make people understand the connection between people and what you're saying," he claimed.
Adrian Dix doesn't apologize for being serious.
He also criticized Premier Christy Clark and Finance Minister Kevin Falcon for supporting the harmonized sales tax.
Dix said it would be "incredibly disrespectul, having misled people so fundamentally in the election campaign" to hold an election before the referendum on the tax.
"People know where I stand: I'm against the HST," Dix said. "People know where Christy Clark and Kevin Falcon stand. They're passionate, aggressive supporters of the HST. We'll see how it goes."
Later, he added that he respects Clark and Falcon, even though he disagrees with them on various issues.
Adrian Dix says that Christy Clark should not call an election until after the referendum on the HST.
For more on what Dix said at his first news conference, see this video below: