Kelowna West MLA elect Ben Stewart addresses a small gathering of campaign supporters at the West Kelowna Yacht Club, shortly after hearing of his riding victory. (Photo - Phil McLachlan)

Kelowna West MLA elect Ben Stewart addresses a small gathering of campaign supporters at the West Kelowna Yacht Club, shortly after hearing of his riding victory. (Photo - Phil McLachlan)

BC Liberal Ben Stewart re-elected as MLA in Kelowna West

Stewart said he did not expect the NDP government to win a majority

The BC Liberals are keeping the Kelowna West riding, with Ben Stewart re-elected.

Stewart won 2,737 out of 5,856 counted votes (46.74 per cent) with 67 of 113 polls reporting.

Spring Hawes of the NDP won 1,843 votes (31.47 per cent). Peter Truch of the Green party won 978 votes (16.70 per cent). Matt Badura of the Libertarian party won 162 votes (2.77 per cent). Magee Mitchell, an Independent, won 136 votes (2.32 per cent).

As of 10:20 p.m., on Oct. 24, Stewart said he is happy to be re-elected, but was hoping for a better result provincially for the Liberals.

“It’s exciting to be re-elected,” said Stewart.

“You always hope that you can do that as part of the team that’s going to form a government and the fact that we’re going to be not government is something that’s disappointing,” said Stewart.

“We’re a long way out of the woods. It’s going to be a very long, difficult winter for people this year. For many businesses that are going to be struggling, especially with tourism and hospitality, there’s so much uncertainty. That uncertainty leads to a lot of other issues such as domestic issues, homelessness. No one wants any of that.”

Stewart said he did not expect an NDP majority government going into tonight.

“I really genuinely believed that the polls were wrong. I ran in 2013 when we were behind a long way and I think that it’s a different election. With COVID-19 is not the same….maybe people were comfortable with what they’ve seen in the last eight months with John Horgan and the NDP and we all tried to be supportive but maybe at the end of the day people were lulled into thinking this government was capable of doing more.”

As of Oct. 23, 8,968 vote-by-mail packages had been issued to registered voters in the riding. There are a total of 46,852 registered voters in Kelowna West.

Provincewide, 724,279 mail-in ballots have been sent out, and there are 3,485,858 registered voters.

Mail-in ballots will be counted by hand, starting in 13 days.

READ MORE: B.C. VOTES 2020: BC Liberal Ben Stewart re-elected as MLA in Kelowna West

“It’s exciting to be re-elected. You always hope that you can do that as part of the team that’s going to form government and the fact that we’re going to be not government is something that’s disappointing. personally, I think our plan is something that we had a lot ton offer. I think that it was really going to do something for the province in terms of dealing with the re-start from COVID-19. We’re a long ways out of the woods. It’s going to be a very long, difficult winter for people this year. Many businesses that are going to be struggling, especially with tourism and hospitality, there’s so much uncertainty. That uncertainty leads to a lot of other issues such as domestic issues, homelessness. No one wants any of that. We want to be reasonable and I just hope that parliament resumes and we can get back to making certain that we come together and make things work in BC.
Stewart said he did not expect an NDP majority government going into tonight.
“I really genuinely believed that the polls were wrong. I ran in 2013 when we were behind a long ways and I think that it’s a different election. COVID-19 is not the same with the uncertainty and maybe people were comfortable with what they’ve seen in the last eight months with John Horgan and the NDP and we all tried to be supportive but maybe at the end of the day people were lulled into thinking this government was capable of doing more.”

BC Votes 2020