Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Skeena-Bulkley Valley Stays Orange, as Taylor Bachrach's vote mirrors much of his six week lead

Election Night delivered another strong result for the NDP, with
Smithers Taylor Bachrach finding success at the ballot box.

Taylor Bachrach was considered the front runner from the dropping of the writ and as the forty days of campaigning travelled across the vast expanse of Skeena-Bulkley Valley he never really surrendered that top of the polls status.

Over the course of the six week campaign, he made the most of his travels to many corners of the riding, reinforcing the message of the national NDP and reminding voters of the work of Nathan Cullen; two key elements for someone who perhaps as Mayor of Smithers was not as well known to voters as the familiar face of the incumbent.

And while there was some slippage from past NDP vote totals, there was enough of a cushion from the ballot box to return the party to Ottawa and write a new chapter for Mr. Bachrach's political career.

The final results released just before midnight by Elections Canada

Confirmation of his successful quest to take up the challenges of the national scene came shortly after 8PM on Monday evening, that as his vote totals began to quickly outpace those of his nearest rival Conservative Claire Rattée.

The NDP candidate securing the election call by mid evening; the only remaining work on the night to await the final numbers which were posted by Elections Canada as the midnight hour approached.

With the final tally on the night released just as Monday night prepared to turn to Tuesday morning,  Mr. Bachrach had expanded his count to a three thousand and thirty three vote lead over Ms. Rattée, with former MP and fellow New Democrat Nathan Cullen hailing the success of the man who now will succeed him and take the Skeena-Bulkley Valley Seat in the House of Commons.

The balloting of October 21st, resembled much of the voter intentions of the campaign from the six weeks in the end, really turning into but a two person race.

Upon the completion of the count, Mr Bachrach had earned 16,670 votes, Ms. Rattée 13,637.

The vote totals for the NDP and Conservatives far surpassing that which were brought in by the Liberals Dave Birdi at 4,704, Mike Sawyer of the Greens at 3,193 and Rod Taylor of the Christian Heritage Party at 1,343.

Jody Craven came within 71 votes of cracking the 1,000 mark for the People's Party of Canada while the two Independents Danny Nunes and Merv Ritchie were left with vote totals in the mid 100's, 164 for Nunes, 155 for Ritchie.

In the end, the final tallies almost mirrored the polling results of one week ago, which at that time had the NDP at 40.3 % and the Conservatives at 28.

Though Ms. Rattée in a fairly effective campaign, improved on those numbers significantly in the final weekend, that despite some last day's polling results that suggested differently.

The bulk of her support appears to have crossed over from the Liberals' Dave Birdi and the PPC's Jody Craven who both dropped from their higher points of nine days ago.

The 2019 results were much closer that those of the 2015 General Election, which saw Nathan Cullen take 51.2 percent of the vote, compared to the Conservatives then Candidate Tyler Nesbitt who claimed 24.7 percent.

The ability for Ms. Rattée to build her vote totals to over 33 percent is a testimony to her hard work in the campaign, taking the Conservative message to a riding that traditionally has stayed true to the NDP for close to two decades.

Should the minority government fall sooner than later, she has positioned herself as someone who could very well have even more success in a short call to the polls scenario.

Though, if the minority scenario becomes a workable prospect for an extended period of time, her strong showing of 2019 may fade from Northwest memories.

For now the success of election night and the campaign belongs to Taylor Bachrach, who knocked off any potential challenge from the Green's with relative ease and positioned himself as a candidate who many believe will follow the blue print put forward from the past of Mr. Cullen.

Before he heads for Ottawa he will have to bid his farewells to Smithers municipal politics and his years of service as Mayor, once in the capital, he will no doubt be hoping for an extended period of political calm in the minority situation.

For Mr. Bachrach the need for that calm in Ottawa will be something of  great benefit in order to get his political footing in a brand new environment.

The longer he serves as MP, the more familiar he will become to the voters of Skeena-Bulkley Valley and that will offer an opportunity to put his own imprint of the riding and to deliver on many of his themes of the last forty days.

For a look at the Skeena-Bulkley Valley campaign see our archive page here.

A wider overview of the national picture and the results and fall out from election day can be found on our political blog D'Arcy McGee.

As the incoming MP takes up his duties in Ottawa, you can follow his work in the House of Commons and notes of federal interest from Skeena-Bulkley Valley from our archive page here.

To view the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

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