Lone Okanagan Liberal MP feeling the heat

Conservative MPs are already putting in an effort to take back the riding, says MP

Get used to seeing more Conservative MPs in Lake Country and Kelowna in the coming weeks and months, says the Okanagan’s only Liberal representative in the House of Commons.

“(My win) was one of the biggest political upsets in the country in 2015,” said Stephen Fuhr, MP of Kelowna-Lake Country.

“I am the only federal Liberal MP in the Interior.”

Of the 18 Liberal MPs in B.C., the rest are in fact in the Lower Mainland.

What may be more striking, however, is that Fuhr turned more than 50 years of history on its head in 2015 when he ousted Conservative MP Ron Cannan by taking 46 per cent of the vote.

READ MORE: FUNDING FOR RESERVISTS

The last time a Liberal MP held a riding in this area was when Pierre Trudeau was first elected Prime Minister and the country was swept up in Trudeau mania. By the end of that term, Trudeau fell out of favour in B.C. and conservatives were back in power in the Okanagan.

Fuhr said a lot has changed since then and his political rivals know it.

“This is an important part of the country,” he said. “It’s growing and it’s a fabulous place to live.”

Roughly 60 per cent of students who graduate from UBC Okanagan now stay in the area and there is a flood of people moving to the Interior from the Lower Mainland because it’s more affordable.

“Not just Kelowna – Lake Country, but the entire valley, is remarkably different than it was 10 years ago. I think we can win more ridings here,” he said.

“There’s lots of opportunity and the bottom line is that Conservatives want this riding back …You are going to see a parade of Conservative MPs rolling through town I would suspect from now all the way to the election.”

What the riding may also see is a Green candidate come to the fore.

In the last election, they opted to not run a candidate and let Fuhr be the progressive candidate in the region, so long as he would work toward electoral reform.

“I did the very best I could to advocate for them and they got legitimate representation on that issue from me, which they wouldn’t have gotten from the other guy,” said Fuhr. “And at the end of the day the government made a decision for a whole host of reasons.”

Just Posted

Kelowna’s strategy to address homelessness making headway says city

More than $830,000 of the $2.7 million needed to get the strategy going has now been raised

Demolish it or we will, City of Kelowna staff tell owners of derelict former motel

Former Ponderosa Motel is unsafe and used by squatters, drug users and the homeless says city

Kelowna firm encourages annual medication reviews for seniors

Accessible way for families to advocate for their elderly parents

Opening a pot shop in Kelowna will be costly

City to charge a total of $10,500 just to apply and get rezoning for a store

Kelowna rapper, Mr. Wisdom addresses the opioid crisis with his music

The musician says he has lost at least 25 of his friends to date

Your morning news in 90: Sept. 25, 2018

Tune in for 90 seconds to get the top headlines for the Okanagan, Shuswap and Similkameen.

Judge weighs Cosby’s sentence after declaring him ‘predator’

Montgomery County Judge Steven O’Neill made the decision as he weighed the punishment for Cosby

U.S. worker charged after video shows him spitting on customer’s pizza

Jaylon Kerley of Detroit is charged with a felony count of food law violations

Andrew Weaver congratulates New Brunswick on electing first Green caucus

Election win means there are now three provincial Green Party caucuses in Canada

Around the BCHL: Merritt’s Matthew Kopperud nets Sun Devil scholarship

Around the BCHL is a look at the BCHL and goings-on throughout the junior A world.

Father, 9-year-old son killed in crash along B.C. highway

RCMP say family of five was hit head-on by a pickup truck north of Williams Lake

2 B.C. police departments won’t use new saliva test to detect high drivers

The Dräger DrugTest 5000 is designed to find THC, the high-inducing part of marijuana

Canada aiming for the moon, and beyond, with new space technology efforts

With an eye on future lunar exploration, Canada’s space agency is calling on companies to present their ideas for everything from moon-rover power systems to innovative mineral prospecting techniques.

New Brunswick Premier meets with lieutenant-governor as Tories, Liberals vie for power

New Brunswick Premier Brian Gallant said the only other leader he had spoken with since results came in was Green Leader David Coon.

Most Read