Will He or Won’t He?
-It’s shaping up to be another political horse race in Esquimalt–Juan de Fuca
These days, federal elections have become almost an annual occurrence in Canada. Mired in minority governments for the past six years, it was widely expected that we would be returning to the polls in 2009. But, that did not happen. That leaves 2010 looking increasingly more likely to be the year that we get to partake, once again, in our civic duty as federal voters. And, as we enter the New Year, the political rumours are already flying.
Just this past week, Victoria-based investigative political reporter Sean Holman posted a story on his website, www.publiceyeonline.com, that Esquimalt Councillor Randall Garrison was in the process of meeting with federal New Democrats “about running for the party in the next election.” Holman pointed out that Garrison stressed that he remains committed to his local Councillor duties, but it appears he is leaving the door open for a possible re-match with Vancouver Island’s favourite political survivor, Dr. Keith Martin.
Garrison challenged incumbent Martin in both the 2004 and 2006 federal elections, having finished as the runner-up by only a narrow margin both times. In the most recent 2008 election, the NDP opted for a different candidate, Jennifer Burgis, who failed miserably by falling into a distant third spot. NDP thinking is that Garrison, who now has a higher local community profile since becoming an Esquimalt Councillor in 2008, offers the best hope for the New Democrats to retake the seat that Martin has precariously held since 1993. It remains to be seen whether Garrison is serious about running or simply just being courteous to the NDP by accepting their invitation to meet.
Also in the picture is Conservative Troy DeSouza who is returning for his own rematch with Martin after losing to our Liberal MP by only 68 votes in 2008. Regardless of whether Garrison runs or not, our riding of Esquimalt–Juan de Fuca will certainly be, once again, one of the most closely watched horse races in the country.