Who ever thought that the timing of an election would advance discrimination?
James Marshall, that's who.
After John Horgan called a snap election, the B.C. Green party candidate wrote a thought-provoking article about the impact of this on the body politic.
Marshall pointed out that not sticking to the schedule of an October 2021 election would likely lead to "a slate of candidates that are older, richer, whiter, and more male than in any other recent elections".
According to the Vancouver–West End candidate, that's because it's a major hassle getting one's affairs in order, including obtaining leave from work, to seek public office.
Those with money and more time on their hands—and fewer employment and family obligations—could decide in a jiffy to put their names on the ballot. Often, that's older white men, Marshall concluded.
"By calling this snap election, John Horgan is dealing a massive blow to equity in our province and democracy," he declared.
"He has added extra barriers to the participation of many of the people that we’d like to see running for office, and stacked the deck for the richest and most privileged among us to clean up and take over."
Marshall's prediction proved eerily prescient when it came to the B.C. Liberals filling their slate of 11 candidates in Vancouver.
Every single one of them is male, as Vancouver councillor Christine Boyle recently pointed out over Twitter.
A tweet like this likely horrifies staff and volunteers at Equal Voice, a nonpartisan organization trying to achieve gender parity in politics.
In contrast to the B.C. Liberals, the NDP has nominated six women for Vancouver seats in this election.
The B.C. Greens have seven women running in Vancouver's 11 constituencies.
B.C. Liberals were more balanced in past in Vancouver
The B.C. Liberals paid much more attention to recruiting female candidates in Vancouver during the Gordon Campbell and Christy Clark eras.
It's worth noting that the cente-right party actually ran more women in Vancouver than the NDP in each of the last four elections.
For example, in the last provincial campaign in 2017, the B.C. Liberals fielded five female candidates in Vancouver. The NDP and B.C Greens each ran four women that year in the city.
In the 2013 election, the B.C. Liberals ran seven women in the 11 Vancouver constituencies whereas the B.C. Greens fielded four women and the NDP only nominated two women in Vancouver.
In 2009, the B.C. Liberals fielded six women in Vancouver. That same year, the B.C. Greens ran five women and the NDP ran four female candidates.
And in 2005, the B.C. Liberals ran four women compared to three for the NDP in Vancouver and two for the Greens.
The only other time in this century that the NDP ran more women than the B.C. Liberals came in the 2001 campaign.
Back then, only one woman was nominated for the B.C. Liberals in Vancouver, whereas there were four female candidates for the NDP.
That year, there were five women running in Vancouver for the B.C. Greens.
Here are the 21st-century statistics for each party in Vancouver:
B.C. Greens: 27 female candidates (42 percent)
B.C. Liberals: 23 female candidates (36 percent)
B.C. NDP: 23 female candidates (36 percent)