Jennifer Rice is really taking it on the chin from the anonymous Internet trolls lately for her refusal to support the deal between the Province of British Columbia and Pacific NorthWest LNG.
The consternation surrounding Rice’s vote to oppose the project is surprising and, frankly, unfair.
Rice is doing exactly what she said she would do.
Rice is doing exactly what she apparently was voted in to do. Or did the blue-collars not understand that during the last provincial election?
The Internet trolls aside, the vitriol now being thrown her way, even by longtime NDP supporters, is quite interesting. It’s amazing that it has taken this long for many within the North Coast NDP rank and file to come to the realization that Rice just may not be on-side with many of their wishes.
This latest industry rejection by Rice must now clearly indicate to many within the North Coast NDP party faithful that orange may no longer be the colour with which they can identify.
The green orange has taken over from the brown orange in the NDP.
Unions (the brown orange) and the environmentalists (the green orange) have long had a precarious balancing act within the NDP.
The NDP’s founding principles were enacted by unionists and those of socialist ideals. Over the years, the party has seen a growing conflict of interest between the brown orange and the green orange. The same high-paying union jobs are often at odds with the environmentalist movement within the NDP.
And this is not just a provincial fight.
NDP MP Nathan Cullen continues to tight-rope walk his way through the dilemma as well. Every time he is asked a question about any northwestern B.C. resource development project or industry issue, he must choose his words extremely carefully so as not to upset his base, whether that be green or brown.
And let’s face facts, Cullen hasn’t exactly been passing around support for the LNG project in the District of Port Edward, or any other LNG project for that matter.
While this may make many New Democrats cringe, what we are seeing take shape within their party is reminiscent of the late ‘80s and early ‘90s fight within the conservative ranks and a decade of in-fighting with the Reform Party and its iterations that handed the federal Liberals majority after majority government.
After years of playing second or third fiddle, the NDP wants to govern. In order to do that, they must appeal to more voters — cue the environmentalist agenda.
Any way one may want to colour it, in order to win, the NDP orange turned green to appeal to the latté-swilling urban masses.
That leaves many hard-working rural brown oranges, who are wanting a good-paying union North Coast industry job, seeing red and many others resigned to the fact that if they want the jobs and all the taxpayer-funded social services they have long fought for, they’ll just have to hold their nose and turn blue.