Mail-in ballots may determine Nelson-Creston seat

·2 min read

An air of uncertainty is hanging over the election results in the Nelson-Creston riding.

While first-time NDP candidate Brittny Anderson has been provisionally elected, her final fate is in the mail-in ballots, which have yet to be opened.

At press time, Anderson was leading her nearest rival, Green Party candidate Nicole Charlwood, by 934 votes.

“I think we definitely need to wait before we can be confident,” Anderson told the Black Press on election night. “We’ve done all that we can do and now we just have to trust in the democratic process and I’m really hopeful that I will get to represent our riding. But I want to wait.”

Charlwood said she wasn’t giving up hope yet either, and said it was a win for the Greens in any event.

“While the final result will remain unclear until mid-November, there is one thing we can say for certain,” she wrote on her Facebook page a few days after the vote. “Green support is at an all-time high in Nelson-Creston… Increasingly, we are together making the choice for a better future; and that is nothing short of a victory.

“While we await the final count to be conducted, we will continue to reflect on the incredible energy that has emerged in every corner of this rural riding.”

The Nelson-Creston riding was a much closer contest than its sister riding, Kootenay West. Third-place BC Liberal candidate Tanya Finley garnered 24% of the vote, about 15% less than Anderson. The Liberals held the riding for a term about 20 years ago.

More than half a million mail-in ballots are still to be counted. The results of counting the massive number of late votes will likely take a few days, Elections BC said.

The preliminary results for the Nelson-Creston riding from Elections BC: Brittny Anderson, NDP - 5,377 votes (39.85%); Nicole Charlwood, Green - 4,443 (32.93%); Tanya Finley, Liberal - 3,338 (24.74%); Terry Tiessen, Libertarian - 335 votes (2.48%).

John Boivin, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Valley Voice