Wednesday, 22 November, 2017

Liberal Steve Thomson elected as Speaker

Christy Clark at women’s luncheon in Vancouver June 21 Christy Clark at women’s luncheon in Vancouver June 21
Heather Davidson | 23 June, 2017, 05:11

Thomson was the minister of forest, lands and natural resource operations.

Former forestry Minister Steve Thomson will serve as Speaker.

The Liberal government's 43-seat minority government is expected to be defeated soon in a confidence vote by the NDP and Green alliance.

The NDP and Greens have argued that convention dictates that a speaker, once elected, keep the job until the next election, while the Liberals have argued it's up to the government of the day to provide a speaker.

"Congrats to Steve Thomson on his election to Speaker of the B.C. legislature", tweeted Kelowna-Lake Country MLA, Norm Letnick. Because the Speaker only votes in the event of a tie, an NDP or Green Speaker would be called upon to cast the deciding vote on the imminent confidence vote attached to the Throne Speech.

"The premier has promised to test the confidence of the house through a throne speech or a motion of confidence", Routley said.

Clark didn't share many details today, stating more information would be explained in Thursday's throne speech, however, she did estimate this plan could mean 150,000 children could be eligible for a subsidy once their parents can find a child care space.

"Nobody in British Columbia wants an election", she said, "let's figure out how to make the results of this election work for British Columbians, let's listen to what they have to say".

Premier Christy Clark praised Thomson's calmness and said she was confident his background as a rugby player would help him in the role.

The B.C. Liberals have announced a number of promises that will be included in Thursday's throne speech, including $1 billion investment in childcare and early childcare development, as well as well as an increase in welfare rates and reforms to campaign financing.

Experts have suggested the Lieutenant-Governor is likely to ask Mr. Horgan to form government, especially since the New Democrats have a power-sharing agreement in place with the Greens, clearing the way for Mr. Horgan to become premier.

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