Carole Taylor cited as ideal Vancouver mayoral candidate

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      About six years ago, Carole Taylor passed up a chance to run for mayor of Vancouver. Nevertheless, time doesn’t seem to have diminished her allure as a prized candidate.

      Although there are no public indications that Taylor is being courted again, this time for the November 2014 civic election, the Simon Fraser University chancellor remains highly regarded.

      “If she wants to do it, then, yes, the red carpet would be out. No doubt about that: the dream candidate,” former Vancouver councillor Gordon Price said in a phone interview when the Georgia Straight brought up Taylor’s name.

      According to Price, Taylor has so much appeal that she could run with an established party, start a group of her own, or go as an independent.

      “That would be a hell of a campaign, wouldn’t it? That would be a fun one,” Price said.

      Price and Taylor were elected as councillors in 1986, he as a candidate for the Non-Partisan Association and she as an independent.

      Taylor, the first host of CTV’s Canada AM, served on council until 1990, returning to politics at the provincial level in 2005, after a stint as chair of the CBC and of the Vancouver Board of Trade. She was elected as B.C. Liberal MLA in Vancouver-Langara and later appointed finance minister. She announced in 2007 that she would not seek another term.

      Months after she was encouraged by supporters—such as then–Vancouver park commissioner Allan De Genova—to run for Vancouver mayor in 2008, she announced in January of that year that she wouldn’t make the attempt because she didn’t want to trigger a by-election in Vancouver-Langara.

      Taylor’s term as SFU chancellor ends in the summer of 2014. Her husband, former Vancouver mayor Art Phillips, died in March. Taylor couldn’t be reached for comment by the Straight’s deadline.

      Former NPA council candidate Michael Geller can’t imagine Taylor returning to civic politics, much less running for mayor.

      “I would be very surprised if she chose to give up her current lifestyle for the early-morning and late-night meetings that the position requires,” Geller said in a phone interview when the Straight mentioned her name.

      If Taylor does decide to run for mayor, Geller, like Price, believes that she will be a strong contender.

      “Carole Taylor is one of the most engaging people you can meet,” Geller said, “and she would be an exceptional candidate.”

      Price is also connected to SFU, as the university’s city-program director. However, he noted that he hasn’t spoken to Taylor in years.

      Although Price sees a Taylor candidacy producing a “dead heat” with Mayor Gregor Robertson, he also said that the advantage remains with the incumbent and his Vision Vancouver party.

      “If the pattern of the past 20 years or so is indicative of the future, parties and mayors don’t get beaten,” Price said. “They don’t get beaten so much as they disintegrate.”

      So far, according to Price, Robertson’s Vision is solid and hasn’t shown signs of internal conflict.




      Dec 31, 2013 at 10:46am

      Wasn't it Carole Taylor who wanted to shut down all the secondary suites in Vancouver. Can you imagine what that would have done to the rental supply of housing at that time. She is an "airhead" designer with too much money and time on her hands.

      James Blatchford

      Dec 31, 2013 at 11:50am

      I think Emily Carr would have a real shot too...and about the same likelihood of running as Ms.Taylor.


      Dec 31, 2013 at 12:35pm

      Wasn't Taylor the Finance Minister here in BC who lowered the Bank Transfer tax to 0% then quit Liberal caucus for a banking gig?

      ROFL nothing would get me moving towards Vision faster than one of these Liberal stooges running.

      Arm Chair

      Dec 31, 2013 at 1:36pm

      Her name is too closely attached to the nightmare era of the now exiled Gordon Campbell.


      Dec 31, 2013 at 1:48pm

      Carole Taylor is 68 years old, and would be 72 by 2017.


      Dec 31, 2013 at 2:02pm

      Is the Straight just going through the phonebook to see who might run?

      Former Vision supporter

      Dec 31, 2013 at 2:06pm

      I'm rather surprised to hear an intelligent political observer saying that Vision has a lock on the 2014 election.

      Gregor may not be a dictator like Gordon Campbell or Sam Sullivan, but he appointed one as city manager and I blame Vision completely for the massive disconnect between city hall and the people they're supposed to serve.

      Medium density doing its job of concentrating the population in sustainable ways is being bulldozed to make way for towers. Transit was completely ignored until the prospect of a super-expensive subway came along and suddenly Vision creates a pro-transit website while their financial supporters rub their hands in delight at the prospect 40 storey condo towers all the way from Commercial Drive to UBC. Despite all the progress on bike and pedestrian infrastructure they've made, the only "green" Vision truly loves is the kind with a picture of Benjamin Franklin on it.

      Oh and Carole, your stint as Gordon Campbell's right hand woman wiped out any trust I had in you.

      As Bad As She May Be At Least...

      Dec 31, 2013 at 2:32pm

      ...she's not Moonbeam. I'd vote for her. ABM. ABV.

      Alvin Karpas

      Dec 31, 2013 at 6:18pm

      We already have a great mayor. Looking forward to casting my vote for Gregor and all the hand-wringing from the nitwits who freak out over the potential of having to walk an extra block due to a bike lane.

      Go Carole!

      Dec 31, 2013 at 6:38pm

      Would love to see Carole Taylor run for Mayor! Her husband Art Phillips left a wonderful legacy in Vancouver - it would be a pleasure to see Carole build on that.