May 9, 2013 2:50 pm

Movement underway within BC Liberals to oust Christy Clark; Dix has no comment

NDP party leader Adrian Dix has no comment on the organized movement within the BC Liberal party to oust Christy Clark if the party loses the election.

It’s called the 801 movement, symbolizing 8:01 p.m., one minute after the election and precisely when the movement plans to begin the process of putting pressure on Clark to step aside.

The movement — made up of party members and business leaders — has already created their own buttons.

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Even though Christy Clark won the Liberal leadership two years ago, support for her within the so-called free enterprise coalition has been lukewarm.

Only one member of her caucus ever supported her bid.

From the start, there has been a simmering opposition to her leadership.

“Fundamentally she is not a Conservative. And I think that has been the tension with Christy Clark from the very beginning,” says UBC political science professor Maxwell Cameron.

“She’s tried to position herself as a Conservative on many issues, particularly on debt, fiscal responsibility, development of natural resources and yet it’s clear – if we were to characterize her ideologically — that she is aligned with the federal Liberal party.”

The group wants to bring in an interim leader for 18 months to two years with the goal to bring stability and credibility to the party.

Then, a leadership race will be held to choose a new Liberal leader to fight the next election.

But the movement not only wants to rid the party of Clark, but her people too including her brother, organizers like Mark Marissen, campaign chair Mike McDonald and current Liberal Party president.

There’s no doubt there is infighting within the Liberal camp.

Gordon Campbell’s former chief of staff, Martyn Brown, says the scandals that the Clark Liberals have endured are self-inflicted and speak to Clark’s leadership.

“When you look at one thing after the next, it’s just a bad series of judgements that fall directly in her lap,” said Brown on CKNW’s The Simi Sara Show.

“There is no escaping that, and this just brings it home in spades to people that it is the Premier’s judgement that is at issue here.”

With the election less than a week away, many Liberal party members are likely wondering what their party will look like after the election.

As of yet, the BC Liberals and Christy Clark are yet to give an on-camera comment to Global News, but released the following statement Wednesday night:

We have focused our campaign on how we control spending and grow the economy. It’s working.

We’ve been heartened by the positive response from supporters and voters all over British Columbia to our clear and consistent message.

We have recruited an outstanding team of candidates who are all working hard and represent the change and renewal taking place in our ranks.  

We are undistracted in meeting our goal of stopping the NDP from taking the keys to the B.C. economy and ruining it through out-of-control spending and running deficits into the future.  

We have growing support in every corner of the province. The party, with leaders like Stockwell Day, Jack Weisgerber, Gordon Wilson and Brad Bennett, is working to ensure British Columbia has the strong leadership it needs to succeed.

EXTRA: Global News’ extended Q & A with Jas Johal on the 801 Movement.

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© Shaw Media, 2013

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