Rumour mill churns over Carole James’ ‘resignation’

Former NDP leader not ready to go just yet

Victoria-Beacon Hill MLA Carole James was shocked Monday when she found out she is retiring from political life – especially since she isn’t planning to make a decision or announce her intentions until later this month.

“I haven’t made any decision and we don’t know what happened,” said James. “It felt like a full moon day today.”

She was at the B.C. Legislature in the middle of a question period committee meeting when her staff member rushed in to ask her if she was resigning.

“I said, ‘No, I’m not.'” she said in disbelief. “By that time all the press were calling and all my family was calling.”

She learned the rumour was reported as news by a television station, and was picked up by other media outlets. James said she was told someone listened to an old tape dating back to December on which she was announcing her resignation as leader of the B.C. New Democratic Party after seven years.

“It really was quite odd. It was a strange way to start the day,” said James, a Victoria resident who has been an MLA since 2005.

Once the “news” spread, the phones began to ring. Her staff fielded 15 media calls in her office and 19 emails within a 15-minute span.

“I had (relatives) worried that something had happened, (asking) ‘Why had I made the decision so quickly without talking to anyone,'” said James.

She felt compelled to call a press scrum at the B.C. legislature, that was very well-attended, “to say the rumours of my death have been greatly exaggerated, as the old quote goes,” she said beside herself with laughter.

Despite Monday’s whirlwind, James said she would stick with her plan, which includes finishing the legislative session Thursday before giving her future some serious thought.

“I’m not a believer that you hang on forever without making decisions,” she explained. “I felt that being in the legislature a full month would give me a good sense of the team, a good sense of the work and whether or not I could contribute in a different kind of role as an MLA.”

emccracken@vicnews.com

 

Just Posted

West Shore resident, local officer encourages women to take control of their safety

Kris Greffard is posting short videos with safety tips for women using local trails and parks

Police and Indigenous communities pull together in 10-day canoe journey

Victoria Police Department, Ministry of Children and Family Development took part in Pulling Together Canoe Journey

Point Ellice House exhibit offers new lens into colonial history

The new ‘Politics of luxury’ display studies the wealthy O’Reilly family from several angles

Nearly a dozen coonhound puppies and their mother to reunite at Saanich park

Dogs’ former foster family initiated one-year reunion plans

Trio brings roller skating fever to Greater Victoria

Roller Skate Victoria offers workshops, summer camps and more

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

How much do you know about the moon?

To mark the 50th anniversary of the first lunar landing, see how well you know space

POLL: Do you carry reusable shopping bags?

While a court ruling determined the City of Victoria’s plastic bag ban… Continue reading

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of July 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Body, burning truck found near northern B.C. town

RCMP unsure if the two separate discoveries are related

Couple found dead along northern B.C. highway in double homicide

Woman from the U.S. and man from Australia found dead near Liard Hot Springs

UPDATE: West Kelowna fawn euthanized, not claimed by sanctuary

Gilbert the deer has been euthanized after a suitable home was not found in time

BC Wildfire Service warns wet weather no reason to be complacent

Fire risk currently low for much of B.C. compared to same time over last two years.

Bank of Canada lowers qualifying rate used in mortgage stress tests

Home sales softened last year after the federal government introduced new stress test rules for uninsured mortgages

Most Read