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Decision BC: Abbotsford-Mission

Decision BC: Abbotsford-Mission - image

In 2009: Liberal Randy Hawes won the riding by over 4500 votes over NDP challenger Lynn Perrin, 58-33%. Hawes, who has been an Liberal MLA since 2001, has decided to step down, leaving the seat open.

History & Geography: A riding created in 2009 to deal with population growth in the Fraser Valley, Abbotsford-Mission encompasses the eastern suburbs of Abbotsford under Sumas Mountain with the eastern half of Mission, stretching out to Kent on the northern side. This riding has never elected the NDP, and the Liberals have often outpaced the NDP by a 10-to-1 vote margin in the suburbs.

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Basic Stats:

  • Population: 53090 (49th)

  • Size: 663.2 km (52nd)

  • Density: 80.1 people/km (52nd)

Odds and Ends: Despite this being a mixed urban-rural riding at 51 people per kilometre, this is the most commuter-happy riding in the province—93.9% of people get to work in a car, truck or van.

Candidates

Liberals-Simon Gibson: An Abbotsford Councillor since the 1980s, Gibson is also a professor at the University of Fraser Valley, specializing in Human Resources Management. He also writes a syndicated column, Office Politics 101, for a variety of community newspapers, and ran a 55 km marathon earlier this year.

NDP-Preet Rai: A two-term trustee on the Abbotsford School Board, Rai moved to Canada from India in 1995. He is an account with the provincial government, and is involved in community fundraising for the new Canuck Place Hospice in Abbotsford.

Greens-Aird Flavelle: A small business owner, Arid owns MSA Computers in Abbotsford, and is a past chairman of the local Rotary Club. He ran for Abbotsford council in 2011, but finished 16th out of 21 candidates.

Conservatives-Don Stahl: A B.C. conservation officer, Stahl has worked as a fishery officer for the federal government, and a park ranger with BC parks. He’s a former Big Brother with the Big Brothers and Big Sisters of the Fraser Valley, and has a diploma in environmental law enforcement from Vancouver Island University.

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Independent-Roman Bojczuk: A former employee of Canadian Pacific Railway, Bojczuk owns  a small Christmas Tree farm. He ran for Mission city council in 2011, but finished in 23rd place out of 25 candidates.

Independent-Wendy Bales: A Fraser Valley Regional Director, Bales lost the NDP’s nomination in this riding to Rai, but alleges that there were inconsistencies in applying rules during the election.

Excalibur Party-Marcus Halliday: A flight instructor, Halliday is part of the Excalibur Party, which wants to restore B.C. to “Arthurian Values”.

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