Legendary pundit Rafe Mair looks around his affluent West Vancouver riding and sees change in the air.
In years past, many people whom I know throughout the constituency would rather have been found in a house of ill fame than part of a meeting supporting environmentalists. But this has dramatically changed, and people I once knew as staunch Socreds are now leaders against LNG development, pipelines and tankers, and now openly Green in their politics. Is this happening elsewhere, I wonder?
The Green Party has another plus. More and more Canadians are coming to realize that government MPs are no more than highly paid lickspittles doing precisely what they're told. They pretend to be busy little bees on their constituents' behalf, but the most cursory examination shows this to be rubbish. My own MP, in nearly eight years, has never uttered a single word of criticism of any statement or action by the Tory government.
The NDP has its base and has been strongest of the major parties on the environment. But Thomas Mulcair looks and sounds so... eastern!
While it's early days, I'll venture this prognostication. The Greens will do substantially better than last time, and that doesn't have to be terrific to be effective. In fact, I'll go so far as to predict that they'll hold the balance of power after next November.
If I'm right, at least there'll finally be something happening in Ottawa of interest to British Columbians.