VICTORIA (NEWS 1130) — After a victory call for the BC Greens in West Vancouver-Sea to Sky on election night, this weekend’s final vote count of absentee and mail-in ballots has the incumbent BC Liberal candidate ahead by fewer than 50 votes.
On Oct. 24, Green candidate Jeremy Valeriote led Liberal incumbent Jordan Sturdy by 604 votes.
Now, the question of whether the Greens will secure their first seat off of Vancouver Island will be answered by a judicial recount.
“In West Vancouver-Sea to Sky, the threshold for a judicial recount is 49 votes. The difference between the top two candidates is 41 votes,” reads a release from Elections BC.
“A judicial recount is conducted by the Supreme Court of British Columbia, and may include some or all of the ballots and certification envelopes for an election. The timing of the recount will be determined by the Court.”
I'd like to thank the voters of West Van-Sea to Sky for their commitment to democracy and our province. The results in our riding are very close, requiring an automatic recount. No matter the final outcome, I am so proud of our Green campaign and the values we represented.
— Jeremy Valeriote (@JValeriote74) November 8, 2020
The apparent win was celebrated by Leader Sonia Furstenau as a signal the party’s support had spread. Vancouver Island.
“I think it’s an indication that we are no longer limited just to Vancouver Island, where we’ve been strong, but that people around the province are recognizing that the Greens are offering a very, very important alternative to the kind of politics of the other two parties,” she said.
In a statement Saturday, Furstenau says the close results are encouraging, even if the Green candidate is not elected.
“We will wait for the official recount to determine the result for West Vancouver-Sea to Sky. Jeremy Valeriote is an excellent candidate and the close results in his riding show that the people of West Vancouver-Sea to Sky are hoping for a more sustainable and equitable future for their community. Every election, more and more voters have chosen to vote Green, that is cause for celebration and we will continue to work with the community to come out strong next time.”
The count will continue in many ridings through Sunday.
With files from Kathryn Tindale