Libertarians look ahead to B.C. election

BC Libertarian Party leader favours legalizing sale of drugs and sex, selling BC Hydro, highways and BC Ferries

B.C. Libertarian Party leader Clayton Welwood

They want to scrap the Agricultural Land Reserve and the minimum wage, sell BC Hydro and open ICBC up to private competition, and they’re hoping the turmoil in the United States will get them on the map in the next B.C. election.

The B.C. Libertarian Party elected North Vancouver resident Clayton Welwood as their leader at a convention on the Thanksgiving weekend. Runner-up Josh Steffler of Esquimalt was appointed deputy leader, and both plan to run in their home towns in the May 2017 election.

Welwood said the party has about 100 paid-up members, 35 of whom met in Vancouver on the weekend from as far away as Cranbrook and Fort Fraser. They’re encouraged by stronger-than-usual showing by U.S. Libertarian Party leader Gary Johnson, whose poll numbers have crept into double digits in some states amid discontent with Republican nominee Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton.

Other B.C. parties are also hoping to capitalize on voter fatigue with mainstream politics. The B.C. Green Party nominated former Nelson councillor Kim Charlesworth to run in Nelson-Creston on the weekend, looking to expand the party’s support beyond the urban southwest.

B.C. Conservatives have chosen Dan Brooks to return as their leader for the 2017 election, after he quit the job early this year.

Welwood, a 38-year-old cost controller for an international construction company, said the Libertarians’ individual-freedom philosophy will be extended to issues such as housing affordability as the platform is finalized.

“It seems every time there’s a problem, the solution always seems to be heavy-handed government intervention, even if taxes and red tape are partly or largely responsible for that problem in the first place,” Welwood said.

The party’s draft platform calls for removing restrictions on sale of alcohol, narcotics and sex, and privatizing B.C.’s highways and ferry services.


Just Posted

Sunshine Valley songbird releases EP

Fifteen-year-old Ashley Pater has been singing and performing since age 9

Rescue boat theft marks third in 3 years for Agassiz-based SAR team

Eight-metre Spirit of Harrison rescue vessel was stolen Friday night, found Saturday morning

Hope stylist holds hair-athon for a good cause

Shayla Ross donating all proceeds of $10 cuts to the food bank

Hope arena turns green for hockey tourney

A second attempt at green ice, with proper ice paint, after food colouring experiment last year

Project Hope celebrates first birthday

Also: lego-mania comes to town, lineup of all-female comedians entertains Friday

VIDEO: B.C. Mounties reunite veteran with lost military medals

RCMP say Zora Singh Tatla, who served in the army in India for 28 years, is the righful owner

Federal government seeks public feedback on pedestrian safety

What safety measures do you think need to improved for pedestrians and cyclists?

4 facts to ring in St. Patrick’s Day

What do you really know about the Irish celebration?

Experts urging caution as rabbits die by the hundreds in B.C. city

Province of B.C. confirms more positive tests for rabbit haemorrhagic disease

Canucks snap scoreless streak but fall short in 5-3 loss to Sharks

Swiss forward Timo Meier nets two, including the game-winner, to lead San Jose

Search continues for 10-year-old Montreal boy missing since Monday

Montreal police said they are exploring every possibility in search for Ariel Jeffrey Kouakou

Airline passenger-rights bill claws back protections for travellers: Advocate

Bill C-49 would double tarmac delays, scrap compensation for flights affected by mechanical failures

Canadian research vessel to explore 19th Century shipwrecks

Commissioned this week in Victoria, the RV David Thompson is Parks Canada’s newest vessel

UPDATED: ‘New wave’ of anti-pipeline protests return to Trans Mountain facility

About 100 demonstrators with Protect the Inlet marched to the Burnaby terminal Saturday

Most Read