Hey city hall watchers, remember Sean Bickerton? Let me refresh your memory.
Bickerton was the articulate NPA candidate who ran unsuccessfully for a council seat in the 2011 election. He was also very articulate in his comments after the NPA team, led by mayoral candidate Suzanne Anton, got hammered at the polls. And I quote: “Together, we have done everything possible to make voters aware of the issues I believed were important in this campaign. But the voters have spoken, decisively rejecting a mayoral campaign based on puerile, sophomoric, gotcha-style attacks and trivial wedge issues.”
As I wrote back then — wow!
He didn’t refer to Anton by name but she was the mayoral candidate. She was also the same person, as a councillor, to support Edgewater Casino acquiring more slot machines and gambling tables for a new casino adjacent to B.C. Place. Bickerton, as you may recall, was a key voice in the coalition that formed prior to the election to combat the proposal by Edgewater to build its mega casino. So it was no surprise, really, when I came across Bickerton’s website and read that he recommends Liberal members of Vancouver-Quilchena support Andrew Wilkinson in that riding’s nomination battle.
Guess who Wilkinson is facing?
You guessed it.
Liberal members in the riding will decide Feb. 17 whether they want Anton or Wilkinson to represent them in the May election. Bickerton doesn’t live in the riding, so it’s unclear how his endorsement will help Wilkinson.
One of Bickerton’s reasons for endorsing Wilkinson is that he’s “not a professional politician.” Wilkinson is a practising lawyer, licensed medical doctor, a former deputy minister and the past presidents of the B.C. Liberal Party and the B.C. Civil Liberties Association. “He is that rare breed, a good person seeking to do good for others and willing to put himself into the maw of the political maelstrom because he believes it’s important —not for what he can get out of it, but because of what he can contribute,” Bickerton wrote.
Interestingly, former NPA mayor Philip Owen, former NPA president Paul Barbeau and former NPA park board commissioner Ian Robertson also endorsed Wilkinson.
Anton, meanwhile, received endorsements from SFU adjunct professor, development consultant and failed NPA council candidate Michael Geller, the City of Vancouver’s former director of social development Cameron Gray, Ab Berar, the president of the Indo-Canadian Chamber of Commerce of B.C. and NPA Coun. George Affleck. “When it comes to passion, focus and optimism for her community, I’ve never met anybody like Suzanne,” Affleck wrote. “To bring that spirit to Victoria would be great for the whole province.”
But not, apparently, for Bickerton.