BC Greens face stickhandling act in deciding which party it would back

Christy Clark claimed victory Tuesday night and said her B.C. Liberal Party will carry on, a razor-thin two seats ahead of the resurgent NDP.

The NDP won 41 seats and the Greens have three seats, leaving Weaver to determine whether to side with the Liberals or the New Democrats in a minority government situation.

While saying the Green Party is focused on good policy and will work with either party, it certainly sounds like party leader Andrew Weaver has more in common with the NDP than the Liberals.

Regardless, absentee ballots will be counted sometime between May 22nd and May 24th and that's when a final tally will be officially released.

Clark and Weaver do have a history of positive dialogue, so her unwillingness to publicly beg for Green support might trace back to those ties.

The Liberals took 40.9 per cent of the popular vote compared to the NDP's 39.9 per cent.

"We understand what compromise means and we're willing to compromise, of course", Weaver said. "They elected a really significant Green presence and certainly a lot of people voted for the Greens across the province and so I intend to listen to that".

The Greens' historic gains on election night leave Mr. Weaver with a hard choice: Will he prop up Ms. Clark's Liberals, or topple them and give Mr. Horgan his support?

Weaver, speaking to supporters Tuesday night, said the Greens could work with either party but he did not indicate a preference.

As for her plans for a coalition government, Clark says she will be awaiting final results.

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Greens won two former NDP ridings and helped a Liberal to win in a third by siphoning off NDP votes, she said.

The results could change with 176,104 absentee ballots still to come and the NDP's Ronna-Rae Leonard clinging to a nine-vote lead over Liberal Jim Benninger in Courtenay-Comox.

Clark also appeared to be doing her best to woo the Green Party supporters and its three members of the legislature, including leader Andrew Weaver.

"We both believe that the disparity between those who have and those who haven't clearly has got out of control", Weaver said. The NDP had only a 0.48 per cent increase in popular votes over 2013.

Horgan did an wonderful job despite being discounted by many commentators - bringing the NDP tantalizingly close to a majority government and still on the brink of possibly becoming premier.

Weaver said he and Horgan agree on some key issues, such as electoral reform and a ban on corporate and union donations.

Greg D'Avignon, CEO of the Business Council of British Columbia, doesn't think a minority government with the Greens holding sway will necessarily stop major energy projects like the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion or the $36 billion Pacific NorthWest LNG project from going forward.

And, Harrison added, the current government has not released the details of the agreement with Kinder Morgan so we don't know what financial penalties might be written into it in the event a government attempt to withdraw.

"Whether it's a majority or minority government that I lead, we are going to work hard with other parties ... and accept the message from the voters who clearly want us to do things differently".

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