Kevin Eastwood (top left, Green Party), Lynn Simcox (centre, Christian Heritage Party), Dave Sharkey (top right, Libertarian Party), Mike de Jong (bottom right, BC Liberals), and Preet Rai (bottom left) are running in the Abbotsford West riding.

Kevin Eastwood (top left, Green Party), Lynn Simcox (centre, Christian Heritage Party), Dave Sharkey (top right, Libertarian Party), Mike de Jong (bottom right, BC Liberals), and Preet Rai (bottom left) are running in the Abbotsford West riding.

RIDING PROFILE: De Jong seeks another term in Abbotsford West

Finance Minister facing off against Rai, Sharkey, Eastwood and Simcox

The riding includes areas to the east of 264th Street, to the north of Highway 1 South Fraser Way and Old Yale Road, and to the west of Highway 11 and Sumas Way. The northern boundary is the Fraser River. SEE MAP.

Additions to the riding include: Matsqui village; residential neighbourhoods between the historic downtown and Sumas Way; a triangle of land in Clearbrook between South Fraser Way and Old Yale Road; and a slice of northeast Langley east of 264th street.

The area is diverse, with substantial rural and urban components and a sizable contingent of voters of South Asian descent and a high proportion of voters whose first language isn’t English. It’s also one of the youngest in the province outside of Vancouver.

2013 result

BC Liberal Mike de Jong won with 50.38 per cent of the vote. The NDP’s Sukhi Dhami won just under 30 per cent of electors, with Conservative Paul Redekopp selected on 10 per cent of ballots. Coun. Moe Gill ran as an independent and won 5.75 per cent of the vote. De Jong’s 50 per cent was the lowest share of the vote he has received since he first narrowly won election in 1994. His share of the vote has also consistently declined over the last four elections.

2017 candidates

BC Liberal incumbent Mike de Jong is the province’s finance minister and has held a seat in the legislature since 1994, when he defeated the leader of the Social Credit party. He has stressed competence and financial discipline on the campaign. Click here for questionnaire.

The NDP’s Preet Rai is a school trustee who ran in 2013 in the Abbotsford-Mission riding, where he picked up 27 per cent of the vote. Rai has focused on health care and his party’s messages on crown corporation rate increases. Click here for questionnaire.

Kevin Eastwood of the Greens works as an assistant grower at the native plant nursery and hasn’t run for office before. He has appeared at several all-candidates meetings and focused on affordability and education as important issues. Click here for questionnaire.

Lynn Simcox of the Christian Heritage Party is a retiree who worked with Manitoba Telecom. This is Simcox’s first time running for office. In appearances at all-candidates meetings he has keyed on financial stewardship, and socially conservative topics like abortion and border protection. Click here for questionnaire.

Dave Sharkey of the Libertarians is a truck driver who hasn’t run for office before. He has focused on the need for smaller government, on the need for decriminalization of drugs, and for market-based solutions to social issues. Click here for questionnaire.

Related: Watch our interviews with Rai, de Jong, Eastwood and Simcox. Sharkey did not participate.

Related: Riding profiles, with links to questionnaires and videos, for Abbotsford South and Abbotsford-Mission.

Related: See what candidates from the three local ridings said about affordable housing, campaign financing, the overdose crisis, paying for their promises, and the widening of Highway 1 and transit links to Vancouver.

BC Election 2017