No regrets, says de Jong

Abbotsford West MLA Mike de Jong (left) with newly elected Liberal leader Christy Clark and leadership candidates George Abbott and Kevin Falcon. - Boaz Joseph
Abbotsford West MLA Mike de Jong (left) with newly elected Liberal leader Christy Clark and leadership candidates George Abbott and Kevin Falcon.
— image credit: Boaz Joseph

Abbotsford West MLA Mike de Jong lost on the first ballot in the Liberal leadership race on Saturday night at the Vancouver Convention Centre.
He watched Christy Clark win a close third-ballot victory over Kevin Falcon.
"Any time you come up short of your overall objective there's an element of disappointment," said de Jong, but added he was happy with the work he and his supporters had done on his campaign.
De Jong, who gave up the attorney general position to run for the Liberal leadership, said he is "proud and enthusiastic" about premier elect Christy Clark, whom he called a talented leader. After a sometimes divisive leadership race, all four of the candidates were stressing party unity, and de Jong was no exception.
"I'm entirely confident that the party will rally around Christy Clark," he said. He noted he and Clark worked together as far back as the mid 1990s.
Clark was a former cabinet minister who left government in 2004, saying she was going to focus more on raising her son. She was an open-line radio host and newspaper columnist.
De Jong remained a high-profile cabinet minister in Gordon Campbell's government. Campbell's popularity plummeted, his approval rating sinking to just nine per cent, in the wake of the HST's announcement, and de Jong allowed that being a key player in that cabinet may have cost him votes on Saturday.
"There may have been an element of that," he said, but he stayed upbeat Saturday night.
"I feel tremendously lucky to have been able to participate in the race," he said.
He called his three rivals for the premiership "talented individuals," and added "to be amongst that group ­- I certainly have no regrets."
Asked what the future holds for Mike de Jong, he wasn't thinking very far ahead.
"I'm going to have a pint of beer," he said.

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.

You might like ...

B.C.-only wines to come to some grocery stores
Virtanen cracks Canadian junior team roster
Michael W. Smith brings Christmas spirit to the Abbotsford Centre
Sexual assault trial underway
Crow rescued after being caught in power line in Abbotsford
Abbotsford man declared not criminally responsible for standoff
Virk shuffled to new job after Kwantlen flap
RCMP seeks public help in solving arson
Surrey RCMP officer to stand trial on multiple gun charges

Community Events, December 2014

Add an Event

Read the latest eEdition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Dec 19 edition online now. Browse the archives.