Though all political attention had been focused on the federal election in the past month, it’s not inconceivable Kamloops residents could be going back to the polls to pick a new provincial government later this year.
It’s a possibility that has the provincial NDP locally working to have a pair of candidates in place if new Premier Christy Clark calls a general election.
Both the NDP Kamloops North and South Thompson constituency associations plan to hold candidate nomination meetings by the end of June.
Clark has hinted of a possible election after the harmonized sales tax referendum this summer.
Kamloops-North Thompson NDP president Rick Turner said there isn’t a sense of urgency, noting the riding is waiting for the provincial party to give the go-ahead for a nomination meeting.
“In order to be ready, we’d like to have our candidate in place,” he told KTW, adding the candidate will likely be chosen at constituency annual general meeting in mid-June.
As it stands, NDP supporters in the north will likely have at least a pair of candidates to choose from as Cecile McVittie and Kathy Kendall have put their names forward as candidates.
He called the pair “fine candidates” who will make it a tough decision for party members.
McVittie and Kendall sit on the constituency’s executive committee.
Turner also noted there are about 350 members in the riding, adding interest in the party did spike during the recent leadership race.
Former two-time candidate Doug Brown lost to Liberal MLA Terry Lake by 500 votes in the 2009 election.
Across the river, NDP Kamloops South-Thompson executive member Tom Friedman said that riding would also have a nomination meeting within a couple of months.
“We want to be ready,” he said, adding the party wanted to wait until a new leader was chosen.
Adrian Dix was chosen leader of the NDP last month.
Friedman, who ran as a candidate in the last provincial election and intends to put his name forward again, said he is unaware of anyone else interested in the job.
He noted the riding has about 350 NDP members.
Friedman lost to MLA Kevin Krueger by more than 4,000 votes in the last election.
– from Kamloops This Week