More than a month after the BC provincial election, BC Liberals leader Christy Clark will finally recall the legislature on Thursday, June 22 to see if she can continue as premier.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, Government House Leader Michael de Jong said:
Today, on behalf of Premier Christy Clark, I informed the Office of the Speaker that the legislature will be recalled on Thursday, June 22, 2017.
The first order of business in this new parliament will be the election of a speaker.
After which, and in the aftermath of a very close election, the government will seek to determine if it continues to enjoy the confidence of the house.
In a statement reacting to news of the recall of the legislature, BC Greens leader Andrew Weaver said he was glad the date had been finally decided.
“In the weeks since the election, it has been encouraging to see all three parties agree that British Columbians want us to work together,” said Weaver.
“The BC Green Caucus looks forward to meeting our colleagues from both other parties in the House so that we can get to work delivering good public policy that will make a difference in the lives of British Columbians.”
Meanwhile, in a statement, BC NDP leader John Horgan said he was surprised it had taken Clark this long to recall the house.
“By the time Christy Clark finally gets to work on June 22, it will be more than six weeks since British Columbians voted overwhelmingly to replace her,” said Horgan.
“I’m surprised it’s taken Christy Clark this long, but I’m hopeful she will agree to test the confidence of the house immediately so British Columbians get the new government they voted for.
“British Columbians are ready for a new government that works for them instead of the people at the top. And I’m ready to deliver it.”
BC NDP and BC Greens alliance
As it stands right now, the BC Liberals have 43 seats, the BC NDP 41, and the BC Greens 3, no one has a majority, and the BC legislature is hung.
The BC Greens negotiated with both the BC Liberals and the BC NDP to establish whether they could work with a party to support a minority government.
Ultimately, BC Greens leader Andrew Weaver announced they had agreed to support a BC NDP minority government with BC NDP leader John Horgan.
Meanwhile, Clark came under pressure to step down, after the final BC Election count confirmed no party had won the election.
Christy Clark comes out fighting
However, after the BC NDP and BC Greens announced their agreement, Clark came out fighting, saying she would not be resigning from her post as BC Premier.
Instead, she said, she would be recalling the legislature to test the confidence of the house. That means introducing a throne speech or budget to see if it will pass.
This seems unlikely, as the BC Liberals do not hold a majority. If that happens, Clark would be expected to resign as premier.
What happens after that is up to the Lieutenant-Governor Judith Guichon, the Queen’s representative in BC.
Either she will dissolve the legislature prompting a new election, or she will ask Horgan to form the next BC government, with the support of Weaver.
Horgan would then have to recall the legislature and attempt to pass his own throne speech or budget to see if he had the confidence of the house.
If that passes as expected with the support of the BC Greens, then Horgan would be the next BC premier and the BC NDP minority government would continue.
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