Christy Clark becomes BC's second female premier

BC scored its second female premier Saturday, as Christy Clark became head of the BC Liberal Party, as well as the fourth woman in Canadian history to serve as a provincial premier, and the eighth woman overall to hold a first ministership.

Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson congratulated  Clark, according to a press release his office sent out moments after Clark's victory.  He said he hoped Clark would seek "a new level of collaboration with BC municipalities."

“We’re at a point in time where BC faces a number of crucial challenges, whether it’s a lack of affordable housing, adequate public transportation, or a clear plan for creating jobs and keeping our province competitive. These are some of the issues we’re dealing with in Vancouver and I know other municipalities across BC are grappling with as well," Robertson said.

Clark has promised to restore arts funding from gaming revenue. 

Randall White reported last week that she made balanced budgets a cornerstone of her campaign and proposed that health spending grow only in proportion to economic growth.

On climate change, Barry Saxifrage summed up Clark's position in a report yesterday:

  • On Carbon Tax she says there are a few “wrinkles” that need to be worked out. No word on whether she would continue the annual increases in the rate after 2012.
  • Also: "I disagree with George Abbott’s plan for a referendum on the carbon tax this June — it will create economic uncertainty when we can least afford it…sets a dangerous precedent…voters in the urban areas will be able to set taxation policy for the entire province. “
  • On Cap & Trade: “imposes serious issues…a great deal of discussion about whether or not it will even survive...”
  • On green energy and economy: "... I believe this government is a leader in climate action and clean energy, both of which I support. We need to continue to move to aggressively establish British Columbia as a technology leader in the area of clean energy….leading on the green economy. British Columbia has taken a leadership position in North America and I plan to keep B.C. at the forefront.”
  • On expanding and exporting fossil fuels: “I support … the proposed LNG Terminal”; she is strongly in favour of “Increasing exports – in forestry, mining and oil/natural gas”; she would visit China and India to increase our sales of natural resources and green energy to these nations.
  • On Enbridge tar sands pipeline she would “wait for science, wait for the reviews”

Clark received 52-per-cent support on the final ballot in tonight's caucus vote.

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