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BC Green leader Sonia Furstenau reelected in Cowichan Valley, Global News projects

Click to play video: 'B.C. election 2020: Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau on hopeful vision for future of province' B.C. election 2020: Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau on hopeful vision for future of province
BC Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau says she will continue to be the voice for British Columbians after an NDP majority for John Horgan and a loss of balance of power for the Greens. Furstenau says "actions speak louder than words" and calls on the NDP government to rebuild the economy in a "stronger and more sustainable" way during the pandemic – Oct 25, 2020

Global News is projecting that BC Green Party Leader Sonia Furstenau has been reelected in the riding of Cowichan Valley.

Fursteanau, who was selected as leader just a week before the election was called, campaigned hard on Vancouver Island, spending much of her time in her own riding.

Read more: B.C. election 2020: BC NDP projected to form majority government

She was first elected in 2017, when the Greens won three seats in a Vancouver Island breakthrough.

Prior to that, former party leader Andrew Weaver had been the only Green candidate ever to be sent to the B.C. legislature.

Click to play video: 'B.C. election 2020: How will the Green Party operate with an NDP majority?' B.C. election 2020: How will the Green Party operate with an NDP majority?
B.C. election 2020: How will the Green Party operate with an NDP majority? – Oct 25, 2020

It is a crucial win for the Greens, as they seek to maintain their relevance after three years of holding the balance of power.

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Both the BC NDP and BC Liberals felt they had a chance in the riding, and leaders John Horgan and Andrew Wilkinson each made campaign stops there.

In 2017, only 3,075 votes separated Furstenau from the third place BC Liberal finisher.

Click to play video: 'BC Green Party Leader Sonia Furstenau’s profile' BC Green Party Leader Sonia Furstenau’s profile
BC Green Party Leader Sonia Furstenau’s profile – Oct 18, 2020

This year, the New Democrats nominated Rob Douglas, the North Cowichan municipal councillor and former director on the Cowichan Valley Regional District board.

Read more: B.C. election 2020 promise tracker: What the major parties are pledging

The BC Liberals, meanwhile, nominated Tanya Kaul, a recreation programmer with the regional district and former caucus staffer.

The riding has only been around for three elections. The Greens won in 2017 and the NDP’s Bill Routley won in 2013 and 2009.

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Known as Cowichan-Malahat from 1972 to 1986, and Cowichan-Ladysmith from 1991 to 2005, the riding has in total gone to the NDP in 12 of the last 15 elections.

You can find a full list of ridings and results here, and full B.C. 2020 provincial election coverage here.

Election Results 2017

BC Green: Sonia Furstenau — 11,475 votes (37.5%)
BC NDP: Lori Iannidinardo — 9,603 votes (31.3%)
BC Liberal: Steve Housser — 8,400 votes (27.4%)
Independent: Ian Morrison — 502 votes (1.6%)
Libertarian: James Anderson — 393 votes (1.3%)
Independent: Samuel Lockhart — 145 votes (0.47%)
Independent: Eden Haythornthwaite — 124 votes (0.4%)

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, an unprecedented number of mail-in ballots were requested across B.C. this election. As mail-in ballots cannot be counted until after election night, these results are not final.

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