New Democrats in Burnaby North–Seymour have chosen to run an experienced North Vancouver politician against Liberal incumbent Terry Beech.
Jim Hanson, a lawyer and two-term District of North Vancouver councillor, was nominated in one of the more hotly contested NDP internal races in the country.
Hanson was supported by former candidate and longtime MP Svend Robinson.
The North Vancouver politician defeated two younger candidates, antiracist activist Markiel Simpson and former Squamish councillor Jason Blackman.
Hanson was also endorsed by Tsleil-Waututh member and former NDP candidate Carleen Thomas, former chief provincial judge and former NDP candidate Carol Baird Ellan, former North Vancouver NDP candidate Michael Charrios, Burnaby city councillors Pietro Calendino and James Wang, and former B.C. NDP president Ian Aikenhead.
The Hanson campaign made the case that their candidate could close the gap in the Seymour section of the riding, which has traditionally voted more heavily Liberal. Hanson was born in Seymour, started his family in North Burnaby, and then moved back to Seymour in 2006.
As a district councillor, Hanson has consistently voted against costly market-ownership housing, arguing in favour of more affordable nonmarket housing.
In 2019, Hanson introduced a motion before council calling on fellow members to disclose donations from individuals associated with real-estate development companies.
Simpson, an organizer with the B.C. Community Alliance, was endorsed by Black Voters Matter Canada organizer Petros Kusmu, former North Vancouver–Seymour B.C. Green candidate Harrison Johnston, B.C. Young New Democrats cochair Jaeden Dela Torre, former Vancouver school trustee Sharon Gregson, and current trustee Jennifer Reddy.
In addition, Simpson received encouragement and mentorship from Hamilton Centre MP Matthew Green, the only Black member of the federal NDP caucus.
During the campaign, Robinson explained over Twitter why he preferred Hanson over Simpson, drawing a blistering reaction from Simpson's supporters, including Green.
One of Robinson's criticisms was that even though Simpson lives in Burnaby North–Seymour, he didn't provide support to Robinson's campaign in 2019 even as Simpson donated to other NDP campaigns.
This time around, Simpson has pledged his full support to Hanson in the upcoming campaign.
CUPE 409 president Marcel Marsolais and filmmaker Baljit Sangra were among those who endorsed Blackman. Sangra described him as a "serious advocate for equity and inclusion".
Hanson is one of three municipal councillors who've been nominated by the NDP across Metro Vancouver.
Port Coquitlam councillor Laura Dupont is running in Coquitlam–Port Coquitlam and Coquitlam councillor Bonita Zarrillo is running in Port Moody–Coquitlam.