Christy Clark to continue governing B.C. until final election results are known

BC Liberal Party leader Christy Clark will remain in charge of this province despite her party clinching a minority government, with recounts possible in some close ridings.

Global News has learned B.C.’s Lieutenant Governor Judith Guichon has asked Clark to continue governing the province while the uncertainty around election results continues.


BC election results 2017: Global News projects Liberal government

Clark’s party won 43 seats, NDP won 41 and the Green Party —; came out with unprecedented three seats.

The seat count creates the conditions for a minority government, in which the Liberals would take the most seats and the Greens would hold the balance of power. The situation puts the parties in a position to cut a deal — and the Greens would have plenty of clout in any arrangement, according to experts.

But it may be a while before British Columbians know which way the power will shift in the province.

Elections BC says absentee ballots won’t be counted until May 22, and there may be recounts in some close ridings.

READ MORE: British Columbians voted for change: NDP leader John Horgan

In a press conference Wednesday afternoon, Clark told reporters she never thought it was going to be anything but a really tough election.

“It is a finish that we have not seen in a very long time in British Columbia,” Clark said. “Elections don’t go wrong; elections go as they go.”

Clark says she believes there was a very strong message sent by British Columbians: “they want us to work together collaboratively and across party lines.”

“[The voters] elected a significant Green presence, and I intend to listen to that.”

As for her plans for a coalition government, Clark says she will be awaiting final results.

She says she has worked with Green Party leader Andrew Weaver in the past and called him a “smart, thoughtful and reasonable guy.”

WATCH: The highlights from one of the closest election races in the province’s recent history

NDP leader John Horgan spoke later in the afternoon.

Asked what he thinks of the Lieutenant Governor’s choice to ask Clark to continue to lead the province, Horgan says he believes the final decision is hanging in the balance.

“The majority of MLAs elected last night are not BC Liberals,” Horgan said. “Sixty per cent of those who cast ballots voted against the government. They voted for change. This campaign is not over until all ballots are counted.”

Horgan says he has now spoken with both Clark and Weaver.

Even though sparks flew between Horgan and Weaver during the campaign, Horgan says he and Weaver have a “range of issues in common.”

He did not explicitly say if he would ask Weaver to form a coalition government, however.

In his turn Weaver said the results were “a make, not a break” for the BC Greens, but it is premature to talk about what will happen in the future.

“We need to see where the absentee votes go,” Weaver said.

“I suspect other parties would be crawling over themselves to offer us official party status in light of where we stand today.”

—; With files from Jesse Ferreras