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Riding Profile: Langley

LANGLEY (NEWS1130) – If John Cummins wants to be taken seriously as a party boss, job one for the leader of the BC Conservatives is getting a seat in the Legislature.

News1130’s “Your Vote” riding profiles continues with a look at Langley, the riding Cummins hopes to take away from high-ranking Liberal Mary Polak.

The sitting transportation minister is going for her third-term and is running on a record of getting things done for the community.

“Our overpasses to deal with our rail conflict with cars, those have been huge benefits to Langley,” she says.  “And, of course getting transit, direct connection to SkyTrain, over the Port Mann bridge in more than 25 years.”

Cummins thinks she’ll have a hard time escaping her party’s record.

“No Liberal can escape the record of their party.  I think Miss Polak realizes that and for that reason in the advertisements she’s put in the local papers you almost need a magnifying glass to find the words BC Liberal,” he says.

Running for the NDP is 27-year-old Andrew Mercier, the party’s youngest candidate in this election.

He feels transportation is the issue here.

“People don’t feel well served right now by the Liberals on the transit file, people in Langley don’t, I hear it everyday and I think what we need to do is restore a democratic voice there and I think that’s something we can offer that they’re not,” he says.

A split on the right could give Mercier the nod, while Wally Martin of the Greens is hoping to siphon off votes on the left.

An added wrinkle to the race is the sudden resignation of Polak’s campaign manager over anti-gay sentiments in the community.

In an open letter, Todd Hauptman writes “the very base of voters who will likely help Mary get re-elected in just one-week’s time are made up of individuals who hold hateful attitudes towards the community I am a part of.”

Polak claims the resignation came after concerns were raised that Hauptman had been leaking strategy details to a friend, who happens to be Langley’s NDP candidate.