Gordon Campbell steps down - Macleans.ca

Gordon Campbell steps down

B.C. premier says ‘it’s time for a change’


B.C. Premier Gordon Campbell abruptly resigned on Wednesday, ending his nine-year run as the head of the provincial government. Campbell has been a lightning rod for criticism in recent months, particularly over his Liberal government’s decision to introduce a harmonized sales tax in the province. “When public debate becomes focused on one person, as opposed to what’s in the best interests of the province of British Columbia, we’ve lost sight of what’s important,” Campbell said at a news conference. “When that happens, it’s time for a change.” Campbell’s announcement follows reports he had lost the support of his cabinet, who were rumoured to be considering asking for his resignation at an upcoming caucus meeting.

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Gordon Campbell steps down

  1. Does anyone draw a difference between 'bad' and 'unpopular' legislation? The HST, if I'm to believe economic analysis, is good legislation that's unpopular.

    I'm really quite baffled that a guy who cut provincial income taxes by something like 40% (!) over the course of his time in office is having to leave because of a tax that affects something like 15% of purchases. What's more, people who argue that the consumption tax is regressive (which, inherently consumption taxes are), are compensated with HST rebate cheques.

    I suppose its just easier to dislike, or even hate a politician than it is to understand tax policy.

    • It wasn't the man's policies, taxation or otherwise, that did him in. It was the arrogant way he introduced legislation without consultation and often in direct contradiction of a promise he had made. The method of introducing the HST was the ultimate lie that became the straw that broke the camel's back. The list of lies and broken promises has taken the shine off of all the good legislation that this party put through. It's sad.

  2. And no one "bullied" anyone into doing anything. The prospect of having a grant from the feds to help implement the HST was a plus, but there were no threats involved. The HST remains good public policy, badly introduced and explained.

    • Didn't Campbell say that the Feds gave him a short amount of time to either take or leave it?

  3. Let's not let facts get in the way of a good dig at the PM.

  4. Great! As a Bristish Columbian I am glad we finally got rid of one rotten apple in a barrel of rotten apples. Not only Campbell, but his entire government is the most corrupt bunch of liars my province has ever seen. They all need to resign. I am hoping for recall of all of them. Incidentally, it would appear Horatio does not understand all of the issues. Campbell said he would not bring in the HST immediately before the last election and he did so right after the election. That is a clearcut lie. it is behaviour and that of his government which is an issue. They have been dishonest with the people of B.C. in a number of areas.

    • I'm not going to disagree that Campbell went about the HST all wrong – of course he did. The HST is still good policy, and I don't think people understand that. Of course that's mostly Campbell's fault for not doing a good job of explaining how the HST works and why it's a good idea.

      He also would have been well served to reduce income taxes at the time of the introduction of the HST rather than doing it a few weeks ago, making him look desperate. Had he come out last year and said that BC is would like to move from taxes on income and shift it towards consumption (that's what the carbon tax was all about too), perhaps he could have sold it better.

      All that being said, I'm obviously a biased being a strong Liberal supporter. The policies they've instituted have been good for me, and I generally agree with their stances on most issues.

    • After reading this I have to say the suggestion of an IQ test before being given a ballet to vote sounds better all the time

  5. Paying Basi-Virk legal fees: $6 million.
    New BC Place Roof: $458 million. (Hey – wasn't that roof supposed to be retractable?)
    BC Convention Centre: original price tag $495 million,actual price tag, almost $900 million.
    The deficit: "The deficit for 2009-10 will be $495 million, maximum." After the election? $2.8 billion. Whoops.

    And that's not even counting the "it's not on our radar" HST.

    Kind of makes the (too) fast ferries and a deck pale in comparison…

  6. You're next Dalton.

  7. Well, that two down(mayor of Toronto was the first) and a bunch to go. It' wasn't the HST that brought him down. It's been in place in other provinces for years. Like the mayor of Toronto, Campbell was under the mistaken impression that he would do anything, lie about anything and could get away with it because he was "green". Dion found out how far that goes but Canadian politicans still don't get it. People have a hell of a lot more to worry about these days. Imposing draconian eco taxes on everything that moves so more bike paths can be constructed for a handful to use doesn't cut it. MacNutty in Ont., Harpo in Que., and Dexter Dolittle still don't get it and will be shown the door in due course

  8. Don't forget the Feds gave B.C. $1.3 billion for implementing the tax; a great way to balance the budget in order to hide the other things he screwed up.