Green party leader Jane Sterk has decided to run in Victoria- Beacon Hill, instead of the Esquimalt-Royal Roads riding where she lives and where she campaigned in 2009.
It’s a decision in part influenced by May’s federal election results.
“The Green vote went down across the country but (candidate Jared Giesbrecht campaigning in the Victoria riding) was contrary to that trend,” said Sterk. “He got both an increase in percentage and the discreet number of votes that he got.”
Provincial elections also show stronger support for the Green party in the urban riding.
“We’ve been looking at the success of the Green Party in Victoria Beacon-Hill since 2001 and it’s always been our best riding on Vancouver Island provincially, so we thought that would be the best place for me to run,” said Sterk.
During the 2009 provincial election, Green candidate Adam Saab won 17 per cent of the vote.
Whether NDP MLA Carole James’ will run again did not factor into Sterk’s decision.
“I have been assuming that Carole will likely not run … but we know that the NDP will run a strong candidate,” said Sterk. “We really looked at the riding independent of who is going to run.”
Sterk was appointed party leader in 2007. She lives in Esquimalt and will not move to her new riding.
While she acknowledges this as a challenge, she said she is known throughout the region.
“We’re certainly running to win,” she said. “I’m not in this to increase vote share. We’re the only party that always has policy available. We don’t create new policy just to try to win an election and I think people are tired of MLAs who won’t toe the party line … We think those factors will make it possible for us to win the riding.”