The 30-year Abbotsford councillor seemed to be in disbelief when the results came rolling in, waiting for more ballots to be counted before he delivered his victory speech to cheering supporters.
Early results in the Abbotsford-Mission riding were still seeing BC Liberal candidate Simon Gibson with a lead over BC NDP candidate Preet Rai.
Shortly after 9 p.m., volunteers and supporters of Rai’s gathered at his First Avenue campaign office. The mood was quiet as everyone was carefully watching television at the front of the room where the ballot counts streamed in from across the province.
Just two blocks down the road at Gibson’s office, the room was decidedly more energetic.
And while Gibson was still cautious about his lead, he did say that it “seemed very promising.
At this posting, with 25 of 117 ballot boxes reporting, Gibson sat with 2,067 votes and Rai had 683. In third place so far is BC Conservative Don Stahl.
With just minutes to go before polls closed in the 2013 provincial election, candidates in the Abbotsford-Mission riding were nervous and optimistic about the results.
In the NDP’s camp, Preet Rai was joined by a dozen supporters in his Mission campaign office on First Avenue, which was decorated in orange and overflowing with food and drinks.
“I feel great — pumped,” said Rai, who is currently a school trustee in Abbotsford.
“We put in a great effort,” commented Rai’s campaign manager Stan Petersen, adding volunteers have been busy calling constituents and encouraging them to vote.
In Simon Gibson’s BC Liberal office at the corner of Horne Street and N. Railway Avenue in Mission, about a dozen volunteers were preparing for the big night as more supporters trickled in.
Gibson, who spent the day with his family, arrived at the campaign headquarters just before 6 p.m. He’s optimistic about his chances, but noted it will be more challenging for his party province wide.
The last few months have been positive and there has been a lot of support from constituents, said Gibson, who is a city councillor in Abbotsford.
|Aird Flavelle||Green Party of BC||1,349||9.27%|
|Simon Gibson||BC Liberal Party||7,592||52.20%|
|Marcus Halliday||BC Excalibur Party||93||0.64%|
|Preet Rai||BC NDP||3,600||24.75%|
|Don Stahl||BC Conservative Party||1,443||9.92%|
|101 of 117 ballot boxes reported||14,545||100%|