Simons drops out of NDP leadership race

With just over a week to go before B.C. NDP members pick a new leader, Powell River-Sunshine Coast MLA Nicholas Simons has dropped out.

Simons announced his decision Thursday and said he is supporting Juan de Fuca MLA John Horgan. Simons has trailed front-runners Mike Farnworth, Adrian Dix and Horgan in recent polls, and has even polled behind marijuana activist Dana Larsen, the only non-MLA in the contest.

“I spoke to Mike and Dana last night, and to Adrian this morning,” Simons said Thursday. “All the candidates are my friends, and that’s not going to change. But I think John Horgan will surprise and impress a lot of people, as he has impressed me.”

Like Fraser-Nicola MLA Harry Lali, Simons dropped out after expressing concerns about the NDP’s $15,000 entry fee for the leadership contest, and the requirement that all leadership funds raised by split 50-50 with the provincial party. Simons took part in the province-wide series of debates sponsored by the party, which finished up Wednesday evening in Terrace.

The NDP holds a province-wide vote of members that concludes April 17 with a convention-style event at the Vancouver convention centre. After advance polls for the phone and Internet vote, the party plans a series of voting rounds at the leadership assembly to determine the winner by 6:30 p.m.

Simons was one of the 13 MLAs who refused to support Victoria-Beacon Hill MLA Carole James as party leader last year, precipitating her resignation and the contest to replace her.

Just Posted

Emergency notifications coming to the Alberni Valley

ACRD will expand the ‘Connect Rocket’ community alert system

Organizations helping Alberni’s marginalized feel the pinch

Operational demands, wage hike put hole in Bread of Life budget

Port Alberni votes to change way council pay is increased

New way will focus on Consumer Price Index, future councils

Port Alberni’s Salvation Army kettle campaign needs help

Dec. 15 is matching day at Walmart kettle

‘Ghost bikes’ installed to remember teen cyclists who died in Port Alberni

Cycle Alberni installs memorials to remember teens, remind all about road safety

REPLAY: B.C’s best video this week

In case you missed it, here’s a look at the replay-worth highlights from this week across the province

Microscopic parasite found in Prince Rupert water affecting thousands

More than 12,000 residents affected by the boil water advisory issued Dec. 14

Trudeau lashes out at Conservatives over migration “misinformation”

Warning against the “dangers of populism,” Trudeau says using immigration as a wedge political issue puts Canada’s future at risk.

B.C. hockey coach creates ‘gear library’ to remove cost barrier of sport

Todd Hickling gathered donations and used gear to remove the cost barrier for kids to play hockey.

Canada’s ambassador meets with second detainee in China

Global Affairs says John McCallum, Canada’s ambassador to China, met with Spavor Sunday

‘They’re coming:’ Flying cars may appear in urban skies by 2023

Air taxis will number 15,000 and become a global market worth $32 billion by 2035

B.C. VIEWS: Andrew Wilkinson on taxes, ICBC and union changes

Opposition leader sees unpredictable year ahead in 2019

5 tips for self-care, mental wellness this holiday season

Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions urging British Columbians to prioritize self care through festive season

Rescued B.C. cat with misshapen legs in need of forever home – with carpet

Mirielle was born with misshapen back legs and after a tough life on the streets, is looking for a forever home.

Most Read