Hor­gan loses bet, but glad to wear a leg­end’s sweater

Times Colonist - - The Capital / Island - — By Les Leyne and Lind­say Kines

HOME ALONE — Saanich South MLA Lana Popham ac­knowl­edged a staff mem­ber in the leg­is­la­ture this week and, in the process, re­called her early Ma­caulayCulkin-like days as the new agri­cul­ture min­is­ter.

“When I was first sworn in as the Min­is­ter of Agri­cul­ture, I went to see where my of­fice would be,” she said. “I walked in and the first thing I no­ticed was that there was no­body in my of­fice, at all. There were a lot of desks and a lot of spots where peo­ple might be, but no­body was there. I came in and out quite a few times, hop­ing, ev­ery time I opened the door, that some peo­ple would be there. And it wasn’t hap­pen­ing.

“One day I walked in, and this won­der­ful woman by the name of Lisa said: “Hi, I’m Lisa, and I’m here to help.” I don’t know if I’ve ever looked at any­one with more love in my eyes than at that point. So Lisa John­son is here. She is my ad­min­is­tra­tive co-or­di­na­tor. I ap­pre­ci­ate ev­ery­thing you have done since I’ve been sworn in.” ROLE REVERSAL — Af­ter 12 years as a critic, Pre­mier John Hor­gan still has some adapt­ing to do in the leg­is­la­ture. He re­ferred to in­terim Op­po­si­tion Leader Rich Cole­man as “Min­is­ter” in­stead of “Mem­ber.”

“I’ll keep go­ing back and forth,” Hor­gan quipped. “As long as you keep say­ing Pre­mier, that’s good by me.”

Hor­gan was ob­vi­ously pay­ing at­ten­tion dur­ing his time in Op­po­si­tion, since he was quick to bor­row one of the Lib­er­als’ favourite lines of de­fence over the years. Asked whether public money will be used to de­fend the defama­tion law­suit by Gor­don Wil­son, Hor­gan adopted the time-hon­oured stance: “This is­sue is be­fore the courts, and we couldn’t pos­si­bly in­ter­fere.” JERSEY BOY — NDP MLA Judy Darcy got the up­per hand on her boss by win­ning a bet on who would cap­ture the West­ern Lacrosse As­so­ci­a­tion cham­pi­onship.

Darcy’s New West­min­ster Sal­monbel­lies de­feated Hor­gan’s beloved Vic­to­ria Sham­rocks at Queen’s Park Arena last month, so Hor­gan du­ti­fully showed up in the leg­is­la­ture last week wear­ing a Sal­monbel­lies jersey — though he noted that it wasn’t just any old sweater.

“I am happy to be wear­ing this jersey, par­tic­u­larly be­cause it is a game-worn jersey by one of the great­est lacrosse play­ers Canada has ever seen — hall-of-famer Wayne Goss, who played for 14 sea­sons for the Sal­monbel­lies,” Hor­gan said.

“He was a Mann Cup cham­pion. He was rookie of the year, a three-time league MVP and one of the most de­cent peo­ple you’ll find any­where. So to be able to wear Wayne Goss’s jersey is an hon­our and a priv­i­lege.” BCCP vs. CPBC — The B.C. Con­ser­va­tives are go­ing to take an­other run at get­ting their act to­gether next week­end, with an an­nual gen­eral meet­ing that will include dis­cus­sion about chang­ing their name.

The party cratered in the May elec­tion af­ter a bizarre lead­er­ship ar­gu­ment last fall that saw the board of di­rec­tors fire its leader just a few weeks af­ter he had won the po­si­tion af­ter re­sign­ing ear­lier over a dif­fer­ent is­sue.

The Con­ser­va­tives, who lost their of­fi­cial spokesman to an even smaller party half­way through the cam­paign, fielded only 10 can­di­dates in May and man­aged to col­lect one-half per cent of the pop­u­lar vote, although two can­di­dates split enough of the vote to make a dif­fer­ence in two rid­ings won by the NDP.

One no­table name on the agenda is Fort St. John Mayor Lori Ack­er­man, who sought a B.C. Lib­eral nom­i­na­tion and re­mains in­volved in that party. She said she has been in­vited as a guest, which has raised some eye­brows in the Lib­eral cau­cus.

There will also be speeches by as many as five prospec­tive Con­ser­va­tive lead­er­ship can­di­dates, and po­ten­tial Con­ser­va­tive nom­i­nees for the Kelowna West by­elec­tion.

The meet­ing venue is the Flour­ish­ing Chi­nese Seafood Restau­rant, in Lan­g­ley.

Although some new names for the B.C. Con­ser­va­tive Party might be sug­gested by mem­bers at the gath­er­ing, the only op­tion cur­rently on the agenda is — wait for it — the Con­ser­va­tive Party of B.C.


NDP MLA Judy Darcy and Pre­mier John Hor­gan, wear­ing the jersey of New West Sal­monbel­lies hall-of-famer Wayne Goss.

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