Not long after the Straight reported on-line on September 19 that Jenny Kwan described the Coalition of Progressive Electors as the “only civic party that is truly committed to being an effective representative of the grassroots in Vancouver”, the provincial politician begun to ring some numbers.
The New Democrat MLA called elected representatives of Vision Vancouver to inform them that there was an editing error in her message that was read on her behalf at COPE’s annual general meeting that day.
“It’s where it reads that COPE is the only civic party representing the grassroots,’ Kwan told the Straight by phone on September 21. “I think that should have read, actually, that COPE is a party that does represent the grassroots.”
Vision, which draws huge financial contributions from both corporations and labour unions, is a breakaway party from COPE. In the 2008 municipal election, the two entered into a three-way partnership with the local Greens.
“I’ve always been supportive of progressive forces coming together to represent our community,” Kwan said.
Coun. Geoff Meggs was among the Vision folks reached by Kwan. “She wanted to reassure us that she’s very convinced that Vision is also a grassroots organization, not just COPE,” Meggs told the Straight by phone.
Noting that he’s a big fan of Kwan, Meggs also said that the Vancouver–Mount Pleasant MLA “didn’t want us to get the impression that she was making any disparaging comparisons”.
“I certainly didn’t think she was, so that’s fine,” added Meggs, whose wife, Jan O’Brien, is the NDP provincial secretary.