THE BLOG

How Self-Inflicted Wounds Made The B.C. Conservative Party Irrelevant

04/30/2013 05:34 EDT | Updated 06/30/2013 05:12 EDT

At a party convention three years ago -- British Columbia's Conservative Party leader -- Jim Cummins -- remarked how the "BC Conservatives are going to target not only disgruntled BC Liberal voters but also the NDP's traditional support bases."

Two weeks removed from the provincial election -- according to the Angus Reid poll - the Conservatives are in virtual tie with the Greens. The BC NDP is on the verge of forming a majority government at 45% while the Liberals are at 31 % and the Conservatives at 11 % and the Greens at 10 %

For the Liberals, the latest poll gives them little hope to form the next government and their small "improvement came at the expense of the Conservatives and Green Party." For the Conservative party -- 2013 looked promising and now, it seems, its even losing its potential traditional supporters.

Its leader left a promising career as an MP to take over the party mere two years ago. I wonder why there are many shortcomings from an experienced politician led party. After all, he served in Harper's Ottawa where discipline is the great ingredient that has produced a healthy majority for a once neglected political party and politician.

Just last week the party let go of four candidates and ordered the re-vetting of all of its candidates. To make matter worse, the party also let go of a senior volunteer who was in charge of the vetting process for the party.

Why did the party let go all these candidates and their senior volunteer? It is because they were incompetent to begin with.

In a slew of candidates that clearly lack diversity , Ron Herbert looked promising and was the latest candidate to be let go. He represented the Vancouver-West End riding but was fired for calling the Premier a "bitch". Before him Mischa Popoff , a candidate for Bondary - Similkameen was let go for harsh remarks made about single mothers.

A few days before that -a candidate from Vancouver-False Creek - Ian Tootlill - was fired over bizarre comments he made about Hitler and women on twitter. In the same week - North Vancouver-Lonsdale candidate Jeff Sprague was dropped for "allegedly driving while impaired".

Who is next? And we are just mid-way to the conclusion of the election.

I can not help but wonder what happened to the great promise of the old party. The initial problem began when Christy Clark's Liberals made a sharp turn to the right to appease the Conservatives in Ottawa. A chance to have a right-leaning government in B.C. prompted the Harper's Conservatives to support her government and a slew of senior staffers from Ottawa came to work for her.

They were given senior roles to make the party more right leaning and the Premier even contemplated changing the name of her political party.

Then the NDP embraced the radical middle where the B.C. Liberals traditionally governed from. The Greens started making an impression and become much like a combination of old Progressive Conservative and socialist segment of society essentially becoming the classical NDP.

The Conservative Party started becoming irrelevant and lost their standing in the new political reality of the province. It became like the old Reform party at its worst with undisciplined extremists as candidates still advertising their organic perspectives that are from the stone ages on social media.

As British Colombians focused - they found out that the party lacked the discipline like the Harper Conservatives where the leader came from and he reminded them of the Stockwell Day Canadian Alliance years where the leader allowed extremists to speak freely, caucus unrest to be the norm and undermining himself in the process.

That maybe why the century old party is expected to earn no seats in 2014. It no longer is the party where nominated Liberal candidates such as Rick Peterson are coming to support. It has too many self-inflicted wounds to be taken serious in 2013.