Dix takes blame, say he will step down 0
Adrian Dix defends use of positive campaign, says he will stay on until a new leader is chosen in the middle of 2014, at a press conference Sept. 18, 2013. (CARMINE MARINELLI/ 24 HOURS)
BC NDP Leader Adrian Dix bid a much-anticipated farewell to the leadership role Wednesday, months after the party lost a provincial election it was poised to win.
Dix will stay on as party leader until a new one is chosen in mid-2014, as well as the MLA for Vancouver-Kingsway.
He was expected to win the May 14 election handily, as polls showed the ruling BC Liberal Party’s popularity was crumbling. But on election day, the NDP came in second, leaving some critics to accuse Dix of not fighting dirty enough to win, and for letting the Liberals define the election issues.
The longtime NDP representative seemed upbeat Wednesday, and even a couple of joke attempts that bombed with reporters didn’t sour his mood while answering questions.
“I think as a party we have to move forward,” said Dix. “We have to learn the lessons of that — learn the lessons but not fixate on them because we have work to do.”
He took responsibility for the party’s election loss, but stood by his decision to run a positive campaign, adding the party will write its own next chapter.
“We’re going to continue to do a good job at what we do while the leadership candidates have a debate over the direction of the party,” he said. “I feel very good about where we are as a caucus.”
Insisting he is in tune with NDP membership, Dix said such a debate is needed, pointing out the party has now narrowly lost three elections.
Port Coquitlam MLA Mike Farnworth has been the most talked about possibility to run for the party’s leadership, with Vancouver Island MLA John Horgan also mulling running again.