Green party leader Elizabeth May looks on after announcing Daniel Green as a Deputy leader of the party during a news conference in Ottawa, Tuesday December 2, 2014. The NDP’S stature in New Brunswick ahead of the October federal election has taken a hit following a series of defections to the Greens. Adrian Wyld/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Bachrach, Sawyer react after 14 New Brunswick NDP candidates jump ship to Greens

The NDP have not been able to nominate a single federal candidate in New Brunswick

In the discussion on climate change, the tide is turning.

That’s the perspective of Mike Sawyer, the Green Party of Canada’s candidate in Skeena-Bulkley Valley for the upcoming federal election.

Discussing the Sept. 3 announcement that 14 former candidates for New Brunswick’s provincial NDPs would be jumping ship and throwing support behind the provincial Green Party, Sawyer said he sees the move as part of a larger exodus of the party’s environmental wing, adding he feels the NDP — both provincially and federally — is in dire straits.

“For many years they’ve been the tent that voters with environmental values would gather under and I think what is happening is that both provincially and federally the NDP have been underperforming in terms of policies and actions that would be appealing to people with environmental values.”

The move comes as the NDP have not been able to nominate a single federal candidate in New Brunswick.

As of Sept. 3 the party has nominated only one federal NDP candidate in Prince Edward Island.

“I think what we’re seeing is … they’re losing those people who have strong environmental values to alternatives — and the only alternative for people with strong environmental values right now happens to be the Green Party.”

The 14 former New Democrats announced their departure in Moncton on Sept. 3, alongside David Coon, leader of The Green Party of New Brunswick.

READ MORE: Race a factor in NDP’s poor outlook in N.B. ahead of election: ex-party executive

With respect to a potential coalition between the federal Greens and another party (or parties) after the federal eleaction in October, Sawyer said the Greens are looking for a non-partisan approach to climate change.

“The Green Party is the only party that has publicly stated that in order to deal with the so-called climate change emergency that we need a level of co-operation between the different parties that has been essentially unprecedented since the Second World War.

“If it turns out that the Greens had the opportunity to work with other parties and if those parties were sincere in rolling up their sleeves and addressing the looming crisis that is about to come on us, of course we would work with them.”

But Sawyer said this statement comes with a huge underlying caveat.

“We would work with them, but we’d be relatively uncompromising in terms of the need to address climate change in a relatively short order.”

NDP candidate Taylor Bachrach said the idea of a Conservative-Green coalition should give voters pause.

“Progressive voters need only take a look at the numbers in this riding to see it’s a race between the NDP and the Conservatives,” he said. “When they find out the Greens are willing to prop up a Conservative government, I think their choice will be fairly clear.”

Sawyer said he was surprised at the “nastiness” of the suggestion that the Greens would “prop up” a Conservative government.

“At no time has the Green Party said they would prop up a Conservative government … what Elizabeth May said is that these are challenging times in terms of getting everyone to work towards a climate change solution [and] if the Conservatives came up with a proposal to deal with climate change that she would work with them — or any other party — that had a solution that was workable.

“That is not propping up a Conservative government.”

For his part, Bachrach expressed excitement and confidence in the New Democrat plan to tackle the issue of climate change.

“The NDP’s climate plan is the the only plan this election that embodies the spirit of the Green New Deal by tackling both the climate crisis and economic inequality.

“We have solid plans for pharmacare, affordable housing and more.”

Bachrach was also recently announced as one of 25 candidates endorsed by the non-partisan organization GreenPAC, which supports environmentally-conscious candidates from all major parties (other notable endorsements included Elizabeth May [Green], Michael Chong [Conservative] and Jane Philpott [Independent]).

READ MORE: Mike Sawyer announced as Green candidate for Skeena-Bulkley Valley

The federal election must be held on or before Oct. 21. Current polls suggest the Liberals and Conservatives are neck-and-neck, with current seat projections tending to slightly favour the Grits.

In 2018, the New Brunswick Greens won three seats in the province’s Legislative Assembly, up from one seat in the 2014 election.

Currently 15 Green representatives hold seats in provincial legislatures, with the Green Party of Prince Edward Island’s eight members forming the official opposition to the province’s Progressive Conservative minority government.

Just Posted

Prince Rupert’s students are baking it all the way to the bank

Charles Hays band students serve up goodies to fund summer trip

Two temporary voyages between Prince Rupert and Ketchikan added to AMHS schedule

October and November will see service to Alaska during the last week of each month

Police still looking for more info on missing mushroom picker in Nass Valley

65-year-old Greg Agnew was reported missing on Sept. 30

Conrad is giving thanks

Conrad students celebrate the holiday with a special meal

Last house standing from Third Ave. fire demolished

Leftover debris has also been cleared from the site

ELECTION 2019: Climate strikes push environment to top of mind for federal leaders

Black Press Media presents a three-part series on three big election issues

Sentencing date set for Vancouver Island father convicted of killing his two daughters

Andrew Berry was found guilty of two counts of second-degree murder last month

B.C. woman finds mysterious coin among Grandma’s collection

Grandmother died when she was very young and her past is not well known to her mother

Advanced polls saw 4.7 million Canadians cast their ballots in the 2019 federal election

That’s a 29 per cent increase from advance polling in 2015

Cheating husband sues mistress for gifted ring after wife learns about affair

The husband gave his mistress $1,000 to buy herself a ring in December 2017

Pot use admission at U.S. border snagging Canadian boomers, says lawyer

A waiver to enter the U.S. can cost $2,000 and isn’t a guarantee

Health concerns over vaping cast haze over Canadian cannabis market expansion

More than 1,000 people in the United States, and a handful in Canada, have developed a lung ailment

UPDATE: British couple vacationing in Vancouver detained in U.S. after crossing border

CBP claims individuals were denied travel authorization, crossing was deliberate

After losing two baby boys, B.C. parents hope to cut through the taboo of infant death

Oct. 15 is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day in B.C.

Most Read