Opinion: Premier Horgan’s blundering shows he needs to stop talking

Chris Campbell

People were commenting just a few weeks ago about how B.C. Premier John Horgan was letting others do the talking about COVID-19.

Horgan had receded into the background somewhat and let Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry lead the way. It seemed like we even heard more from Finance Minister Carole James than we did from Horgan the past few months.

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Now I think I know why.

Horgan has blundered his way through the past week with asinine comments on two separate subjects.

First came him admitting he "mischaracterized the challenges of addictions," after the B.C.’s worst-ever month for overdose deaths.

"We have an insidious virus that affects anyone at any time and we have an opioid crisis that involves people using drugs," he said. "Those are choices initially and then they become dependencies. Once people make those choices, they are no longer in a position to stop making those choices without intervention."

It felt like victim blaming and Horgan was rightly dragged for the insensitive comments.

Now Horgan isn't ruling out a fall election despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Horgan told reporters Thursday that the government is mandated to hold an election in October next year, so, there's "an opportunity" to do so this fall, next spring or next summer.

What the hell are you talking about?

The province is hanging on the edge of a cliff and Horgan’s talking about sending people to the polls.

It’s ridiculous.

Horgan's comment was met by surprise and disappointment by interim Green leader Adam Olsen and Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson on Twitter.

They both pointed to the co-operation of all elected parties in the face of the pandemic and the interest of British Columbians in feeling safe rather than focus on politics.

"British Columbians would rightfully be outraged to have an unnecessary election forced on them in the midst of a pandemic," Olsen said in a tweet.

Residents of the province want their government to be working collaboratively on fighting the pandemic and rebuilding the economy, he said.

"This cannot be put at risk for political games."

Wilkinson said an election isn't what people need right now, they need to know they're safe and can take care of their families.

In Burnaby, the province has been telling the city to hold off on byelections to fill the seats that are tragically empty due to the deaths of Nick Volkow and Paul McDonell.

Burnaby has been told to hold off because things are in disarray due to the pandemic.

And yet Horgan decides it’s a perfect time to just toss out a possible fall election.

Just stop talking, champ. I think someone is a little too drunk on his polling numbers.

  • With files from the Canadian Press

Follow Chris Campbell on Twitter @shinebox44.

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