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B.C. MP mulling a run for leadership of provincial NDP

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Yet another B.C. MP is considering a run for the leadership of the provincial New Democrats.

Kennedy Stewart, the rookie member for Burnaby-Douglas, said Sunday he is considering calls from party members to trade Ottawa for Victoria.

He spent the weekend at the biennial policy convention of the B.C. NDP – the first meeting since its unexpected defeat in the May provincial election.

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"A lot of people (are) talking to me about perhaps taking the jump into the leadership race," said Mr. Stewart, a veteran political science professor at Simon Fraser University.

"I'm thinking about it is all I can tell you at the moment."

The science and technology critic, first elected in 2011, said he didn't see it as too soon in his political career to run.

"There's never the right time in politics to do things," he said. "If you wait for the right time (opportunities) usually pass you."

Mr. Stewart says a key issue for the provincial party is a credible message on the economy – something his work as a critic has helped him focus on.

"You have to be serious about the economy. That's one thing the next leader has to be able to do – not only talk about the economy but speak with confidence on economic development in B.C."

Fellow B.C. MPs Fin Donnelly and Peter Julian are also considering leadership bids, but have not officially declared. Nor have several MLAs considering bids.

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About the Author
B.C. reporter

Ian Bailey is a Vancouver-based reporter for The Globe and Mail.  He covers politics and general news. Prior to arriving at The Globe and Mail, he reported from Toronto and St. John’s for The Canadian Press.  He has also covered British Columbia for CP, The National Post and The Province. More

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