Letter: May’s explanation for loss misses the mark

Green leader is off the mark in suggesting that voters were duped into believing that an NDP vote was the only way to defeat Stephen Harper

Re: Rankin returns to office, Oak Bay News, Oct. 21

It is natural for Green leader Elizabeth May to seek explanations of her party’s disappointing performance in Victoria and elsewhere on Vancouver Island.

But if the explanations she offers in your Oct. 21 story are indicative, I’m afraid her hubris has overwhelmed her ability to think straight.

In particular, she is badly off the mark in suggesting that voters were duped into believing that an NDP vote was the only way to defeat Stephen Harper.

With the Conservative candidate so obviously a non-factor, Victoria voters knew they could choose between the Greens and the NDP without fear of helping Harper retain power.

If Ms. May wants to understand why 6,500 more voters chose the NDP, I’d suggest she start with a couple of explanations. First, if you want to capture the green vote, run a candidate with at least moderately strong environmental credentials.

Second, do not insult voters’ intelligence by making pie-in-the-sky promises, such as free tuition.

I appreciate Ms. May’s contributions, and hope that she will be able work with Vancouver Island’s NDP MPs to influence the Trudeau government’s positions on climate change, other environmental issues and electoral reform.

But if she wants to contribute to the construction of alliances of progressive voters, she needs to stop demeaning those who don’t vote for her.

Jeremy Wilson

Oak Bay