It took longer than British Columbians were anticipating, but a provincial government is in place.
New premier John Horgan has restructured cabinet and named ministers. The BC NDP government needs to literally move in and set up and staff offices in Victoria.
Neither the NDP nor the BC Liberals can afford to see any dissension in the ranks when the confidence of the legislature is so perilous for the governing party. A minority government is a new experience for every one of B.C.’s MLAs; a minority of this nature is perhaps even more unpredictable.
If it’s hard to guess how this new B.C. government will work, then it’s just as difficult to envision how it will work for British Columbians.
We can expect a lot of “progressive” initiatives to pass because the NDP and Greens have a written agreement and the Liberals are supposedly in agreement, too, based on their throne speech.
Even though the NDP is now in power, having ousted the Liberals with the help of the Greens in a no-confidence vote, they still have only a few seats majority. This is a good thing, since it will keep them and the Greens on their toes and, hopefully, have them seeking priorities that benfit the province as whole, rather than special interest groups or BC Liberal values (or Green, or NDP for that matter)
We hope this NDP government will find the right balance. It already found common ground with the Greens and it should build bridges with the Liberals. At the same time, it will face, mathematically, the largest opposition possible and we should count that as a positive – there’s every reason why we can expect even debate and strong voices arguing all sides.
Potentially, it’s a balance that can create the right decision-making process for the province.