KELOWNA - Almost every time Christy Clark speaks, she mentions job creation and the economy.
“With Americans closing their country down slowly but surely through protectionist measures, I think we are in a good position to be the gateway to Asia,” Clark said at a recent press event held at Gray Monk Winery in Lake County.
It seems to be these two issues particularly, in which Clark says sets her apart from her competition.
“We need a leader who’s going to fight for B.C. jobs and fight rising protectionism,” Clark said. “The last thing we need is an NDP leader who is going to hike taxes and not be able to stand up in the face of American protectionism.”
Over the last month, the B.C. Premier and Kelowna-West Liberal incumbent has been campaigning around the province, however has spent little time in her own riding, though she did attend one local debate. She was also unable to find time for an actual interview for this profile but did take a few questions at a rally.
When asked what the biggest issue residents in West Kelowna face, Clark said transportation and traffic.
“The population of West Kelowna is almost at 35,000 - it’s grown really fast,” Clark said. “People are concerned about health care, education and housing - all of which they should be, but the thing that has come up most is transportation, transportation, transportation.”
Clark mentions the government’s commitment to improve Westside Road, slated to cost between $45 and $60 million. Additionally, Clark lists the current consultation surrounding transportation and traffic in the Kelowna area as a measure the Liberal government has taken to address the problem.
The 51-year-old Burnaby native is looking to serve in her third term as B.C.’s Premier.
Clark was first elected to the provincial legislature in 1996 and served as the Minister of Education from 2001 to 2004. A year later, in 2005, she resigned for a career in broadcast, most notably hosting her own show, The Christy Clark Show on CKNW in Vancouver.
In her return to politics, Clark won her first provincial election in 2011 after Gordon Campbell stepped down in 2010. She is the second woman to serve as the province’s leader.
After losing in her riding of Vancouver-Point Grey in 2013 to NDP David Eby, Liberal Ben Stewart stepped aside for Clark to run in a byelection in the Kelowna-West riding.
To contact a reporter for this story, email Jenna Hickman or call 250-808-0143 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.
We welcome your comments and opinions on our stories but play nice. We won't censor or delete comments unless they contain off-topic statements or links, unnecessary vulgarity, false facts, spam or obviously fake profiles. If you have any concerns about what you see in comments, email the editor in the link above.