NEWS RELEASE · 14th January 2011
Vander Zalm: Desire for Recall in Thompson-Okanagan strong and growing
Speaking to a standing room only crowd of over 200 people at the Schubert Centre in Vernon today, Fight HST Leader Bill Vander Zalm told the gathering that the anti-HST Recall campaign is starting to gather steam across the province in much the same way as the Initiative petition first began.
“Now that the Christmas break is over, we are seeing more and more people turning their attention to Recalls as the best way to hold the government to account on the HST. This huge turnout today is a sign of the momentum that is starting to build across the province, and shows that the people here are ready to roll up their sleeves,” Vander Zalm said to booming applause from the enthusiastic crowd.
“More canvassers are signing up in Oak Bay-Gordon Head to help put Recall over the top there. We had a terrific meeting in a snowy Kamloops last night with 45 canvassers to kick off that campaign, and now this! It’s Faaaaaantastic!”
Vander Zalm pointed out that Fight HST also has very strong teams in Kamloops North and Comox Valley, where Recalls were launched this week. “As people see every one of the BC Liberal leadership candidates come out strongly in support of the HST, they are quickly realizing that Recall is the only way to get the government to listen and end this tax.”
Fight HST Lead Organizer, Chris Delaney, told the assembly that a Vernon Recall is certain to succeed, given the strong support he has heard from people there for the past several weeks leading up to the meeting today. “The fact that you now have 300 canvassers signed up puts you well ahead of the rest of the province starting out.”
Recall proponent Tom Holmes announced that the steering committee for Vernon Fight HST has set a date of March 15 to begin Recall there. “We have a core group of 5 organizers and over 300 canvassers signed up. We are serving notice to Eric Foster that we want a new MLA that will listen to the people. We don’t want to be told what to think by this government anymore.”
Vander Zalm said that Vernon is the epicenter of democracy in BC, with a strong streak of independent thinking and a passion for political activism.
“We know that the Recall rules were written to make it next to impossible. But like with the Initiative petition, the sheer will of the people of BC will make it work. Vernon will be the fifth or sixth Recall in the campaign. As each Recall is launched, we learn from them and increase our chances of success,” said Vander Zalm.
Vander Zalm says he is concerned that in addition to the strong support for the HST by the Liberal leadership candidates, the big business lobby that tried to scuttle the anti-HST petition in court will do the same with the upcoming planned referendum on the HST scheduled for September 24, 2011.
“We know from experience they will try to tie it up in court for years so we are saddled with it forever. We’re not going to let that happen. Recalls are the only way now to stop them from using every trick in the book to keep the HST.”
Vander Zalm says the Fight HST group will be the first to successfully Recall an MLA in BC.
“Once that happens, more will follow until the HST is gone from BC forever!” Vander Zalm concluded to thunderous cheers.