B.C.’s new Premier-designate is defending his party’s continued acceptance of corporate and union donations, despite campaign trail promises to ban them after the election.
Two weeks before British Columbians went to the polls, John Horgan told CKNW’s Jon McComb the party would act swiftly to ban big money donations:
“I’m not going to tie my hands behind my back,” Horgan said.
“I’m going to fight tooth and nail within the existing laws. And the day after the election, I’m going to change them.”
LISTEN: Premier-designate John Horgan one-on-one with CKNW’s Jon McComb
However, nearly two months after voting day, the NDP is still accepting donations from corporations and unions.
Asked about the apparent inconsistency on Wednesday, Horgan said his party remains committed to the ban.
“I can understand people are anxious about this issue. Big money has been a focal point, certainly in our campaign, and we ran hard on it and we’re committed to making that change as soon as we get back into the legislature. ”
WATCH: NDP calls on Liberals to ban big money donations
Horgan said when the NDP introduces its ban, it will cover corporate and union donations as well as address so called “in-kind” donations, where goods or services are given to the party instead of cash.
The NDP took fire for that issue on the campaign trail, when it was revealed the United Steelworkers union was paying the salaries of several top NDP campaign officials.
But Horgan said the old laws remain on the books and his party will operate within them until MLAs head back to Victoria.
“We’re just in transition now. We don’t have the ability to recall the legislature until we have a sworn-in government. When we do that, one of the first orders of business will be to ban big money,” Horgan said.
Horgan and his cabinet are expected to be sworn-in next week, but Horgan said the legislature likely won’t be recalled until early September.