Friday, January 06, 2006

Skeena-Bulkley Valley Riding

Main Street  Posted by Picasa

The town of Smithers, British Columbia. Beautiful northern community, or battleground riding? Both, if the campaign headquarters on Main Street are any indication. Three of the candidates have offices within a block of each other (click any pictures to enlarge).

Incumbant Nathan Cullen (NDP) has moved his main office from the Smithers Plaza on Fourth and Main to the 1100 block of Main.

NDP Office Posted by Picasa

The Conservative challenger, Mike Scott, has an office one block down on Main (towards the courthouse from Cullen's office). Notice the "For Rent" sign and the "Sold" sign... on the same building. I get a good chuckle everytime I drive by that. Remax. Above the Crowd? Heh.

Conservative Office Posted by Picasa

The Christian Heritage Party has a candidate as well, Rod Taylor. In the 2004 election, Taylor received 1406 votes. Incumbant Conservative Andy Burton lost his seat to Cullen by around 1300 votes. Although I suspect many of those voters would have stayed home had Taylor not run, it is also reasonable to suggest Burton would have garnered those votes and retained his seat. Nonetheless, 1400 people were willing "throw away" their votes on a candidate who was obviously not going to win. There is more support in this riding for the CHP than for the Green Party. That speaks volumes.

CHP Office Posted by Picasa

With less than three weeks until election time, things are really starting to move. I've been visited by NDP campaigners, but no Conservatives or Liberals yet. A casual glimpse around town sees numerous Cullen signs, several Scott and Taylor signs, one Green Party sign (that does not even have Phil Brienesse's name on it), and no Liberal signs. Last year, the Liberal candidate received nearly 8000 votes. My guess is the new Liberal Candidate, Gordon Stamp-Vincent (not to be confused with this Gordon Stamp), will receive around half that many votes, many from his home base of Prince Rupert. I'd be surprised if he gets 6000 total votes in the riding.

Election excitement is in the air. Can you feel it?