Fleming cruises to win in Victoria-Swan Lake

Fleming cruises to win in Victoria-Swan Lake

  • May. 9, 2017 6:50 p.m.

Incumbent NDP MLA Rob Fleming handily retained his seat for Victoria Swan Lake with 12,181 votes (53.56 per cent) to 6,826 votes (29.9 per cent) for second-place Chris Maxwell of the Green Party.

Liberal Stacey Piercey was third with 3,642 and David Costigane of The Vancouver Island Party was fourth with 181.

“We really brought the Orange Wave down here,” said Fleming from his Fort Street headquarters.

“I’m very pleased with the result,” Fleming said. “We campaigned hard and took nothing for granted.”

Fleming won decisively three times before, with 54.5 per cent of the vote in 2013 and 60 per cent in 2009. He was first elected as MLA in the riding in 2005. Has been a vocal critic for the opposition on issues including the environment, tourism, education.

Affordability housing, working to create new daycare space and our $10 a day daycare plan, helping people get in contact with a doctor, innovating with GP practice what that might look like in our community,” he said. “helping students and middle-class families and building infrastructure that we need, whether it’s public transit infrastructure, fixing some of our hospitals and schools. Those are some of the exciting possibilities.”

Fleming, who started in politics with the UVic Student Society, has been a vocal critic for the opposition on issues including the environment, tourism and education.

He celebrated his victory at the New Democratic campaign offices on Fort Street with fellow winners Carole James (Victoria Beacon-Hill), Lana Popham (Saanich South) as well as NDP Oak Bay Gordon Head candidate Bryce Casavant.

Despite Fleming’s victory it’s hard to ignore the upward trend of Green Party votes in the Victoria-Swan Lake riding, said candidate Chris Maxwell.

In 2009 the Green Party had 12 per cent of the vote in riding, up to 23 in 2013 and 30 per cent in 2017.

“Everybody in the deepest parts of them thought, ‘We’ll get this amazing breakthrough,’” Maxwell added. “But when we reflect on it, we actually did that, doubled our popular vote (provincially), got three [seats], and we saw gains across the board, that is reflective of Andrew [Weaver] and the provincial team. I think we’ve laid a very strong foundation for future success.”

Stacey Piercey graciously conceded her first campaign from the Beach House with Liberal candidates David Calder and Karen Bill.

“I got over 2,000 votes so I’m pretty happy with that, it’s sad to see so many friends I’ve made not elected, but it’s a 20 year game, so I’m very pleased with the results,” Piercey said.

For a transgender women to have accomplished what Piercey has is a win in itself, she said.

“I came from Newfoundland to the federal Liberal party, I joined the B.C. Women’s Liberal Commission as a transgender person, that’s quite an accolade,” Piercey said. “And now [after the campaign] I’m a better person because of it.”

Saanich resident Tony Copping, who worked on Saanich Coun. Susan Brice’s campaign when she ran successfully in 2001, said he can’t fathom a minority government.

“A minority government could be pretty weird, and the thought of Horgan as premier freaks me out, he just spouts one liners, he doesn’t have any depth,” Copping said.

10:25 P.M. Wolf Depner / Saanich News

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Currently, New Democrats and B.C. Liberals claim 42 seat with the B.C. Greens holding three seats — an unprecedented situation in modern B.C. political history.

“We just have to wait whether, we are going to be in government or in opposition,” said Fleming.

Carole James, who joined Fleming on stage, as the new and old MLA for Victoria Beacon-Hill, urged supporters to wait a little bit longer.

10:20 P.M. Wolf Depner / Saanich News

New Democratic candidate Carole James just arrived on Fort Street. She appears to be in a good mood.

10:00 p.m. Fleming opening up what would seem an insurmountable lead with 38 of 88 ballot boxes reporting

David Costigane The Vancouver Island Party 84 – 0.92%

Rob Fleming BC NDP 4,863 – 53.26%

Christopher Alan Maxwell BC Green Party 2,724 – 29.84%

Stacey Piercey BC Liberal Party 1,459 – 15.98%

9:56 P.M. Wolf Depner / Saanich News

With a New Democratic minority government looming, indulge me in this shameless act of self promotion: https://open.library.ubc.ca/cIRcle/collections/ubctheses/24/items/1.0074348

9:49 P.M. Wolf Depner / Saanich News

The 2017 B.C. provincial election is still too close to call, but if you listen to New Democrats here on Fort Street, they are trying to exorcise 16 years of opposition by cheering on every close race that flashes across the television. As sports fan know, that does not help, but for many, it must surely feel good. Minority government still in the cards though as Greens currently lead in two ridings, thereby denying either of the two large parties a clear majority, with the New Democrats up by one seat.

9:30 p.m. Rob Fleming has opened up nearly a 1,000-vote lead with 18 of 88 ballot boxes reporting

David Costigane The Vancouver Island Party 31 – 0.88%

Rob Fleming BC NDP 1,965 – 55.63%

Christopher Alan Maxwell BC Green Party 996 – 28.20%

Stacey Piercey BC Liberal Party 540 – 15.29%

9:20 p.m. Wolf Depner / Saanich News

Orange Fire on Fort Street. The mood in the New Democratic regional campaign offices on Fort have turned from guarded apprehension to outright joy as New Democrats have taken the provincial lead 43-42. No sign of Green Power.

9:18 p.m. Wolf Depner / Saanich News

Interview with Bryce Casavant coming up…

9:00 p.m.Fleming starting to pull away after 6 of 88 ballot boxes counted

David Costigane The Vancouver Island Party 7 – 0.62%

Rob Fleming BC NDP 664 – 58.71%

Christopher Alan Maxwell BC Green Party 321 – 28.38%

Stacey Piercey BC Liberal Party 139 – 12.29%

8:54 p.m.

Incumbent New Democrat Rob Fleming says he feels good confident about winning his own seat, but acknowledges that his party may fail to unseat the B.C. Liberals. “The concern is that we could very well tonight…even win the popular vote, but yet not get a majority government,” he says, during a break. More to follow…

8:46 p.m.

First polls reporting 2 of 88 ballot boxes.

David Costigane The Vancouver Island Party 2 0.72%

Rob Fleming BC NDP 163 58.84%

Christopher Alan Maxwell BC Green Party 75 27.08%

Stacey Piercey BC Liberal Party 37 13.36%

8:33 P.M. Wolf Depner / Saanich News.

Rob Fleming, New Democratic incumbent for Swan Lake, just arrived. Interview to follow…

8:13 P.M. Wolf Depner / Saanich News

The party is picking up here, but volunteers are hedging their bets about the outcome. While some predict a strong New Democratic showing on Vancouver Island, they are perhaps more guarded about the overall outcome.

8:00 P.M. Wolf Depner / Saanich News

B.C.’s 2017 provincial election in the books as polls. Stay tuned for updates from NDP campaign offices on Fort Street.

7:49 P.M. Wolf Depner / Saanich News

10 minutes until polls close. A loud cheer went through the office when the phone bank closed. Campaign unofficially over. Now everybody plays the waiting game.

7:36 P.M. Wolf Depner / Saanich News

More food has arrived, so have journalists! Coincidence?

7:10 P.M. Wolf Depner / Saanich News

The NDP’s regional office on Fort Street office is right across from the regional office of the B.C. Greens. Which party will have more to celebrate? Both parties may not like recent polls. They show the B.C. Liberals winning, while the Greens will win three seats, one short of official party status.

6:59 P.M. Wolf Depner / Saanich News

Polls close in less than hour. Pizza and other types of finger food have arrived to feed campaign workers. It is the calm before the storm.

6:36 P.M. Wolf Depner / Saanich News

Polls close in less than 90 minutes, but workers in the shared offices of New Democratic candidates Rob Fleming (Victoria-Swan Lake), Bryce Casavant (Oak Bay-Gordon Head) and Carole James (Victoria Beacon-Hill) are currently decorating their offices with not surprisingly, blue and orange streamers and balloons.

“It’s not easy to have the campaign party in the office, but we make up for it in the fun,” said Negin Saadati, an office worker.

 

Fleming cruises to win in Victoria-Swan Lake

Fleming cruises to win in Victoria-Swan Lake

Fleming cruises to win in Victoria-Swan Lake

Fleming cruises to win in Victoria-Swan Lake

Fleming cruises to win in Victoria-Swan Lake

Fleming cruises to win in Victoria-Swan Lake