Mary Polak. File photo

Langley MLA Polak: Clark resignation a surprise

“Reluctantly” accepts decision

Langley MLA Mary Polak said for her, Christy Clark’s decision to resign as leader of the B.C. Liberal party was unexpected.

“It was a surprise,” Polak told The Times.

On Friday, Clark announced she would be stepping down.

“Serving as premier and serving the people of British Columbia for the past six and a half years has been an incredible honour and privilege,” Clark said in a written statement issued after she informed the Liberal caucus of her decision.

Polak said it was an emotional meeting.

“There were a lot of tears in the room.”

Polak said she personally was, “really resistant” to the idea, but she came around after Clark explained it would be better for the party and province for a new leader to be in place sooner than later.

“Reluctantly, I understand,” Polak said.

It ensures that when the inevitable collapse of the NDP-Green coalition occurs, the new Liberal leader will have had time to to prepare, Polak said.

“The average minority government in Canada lasts 18 to 24 months,” Polak noted.

Polak said people in her riding have been coming up to her and praising Clark for showing “class” in the way she dealt with the election results.

“It’s one thing to out-and-out lose an election, but to win the election and lose the government, it’s a really unique situation,” Polak said.

Polak said she has no plans to run for the top job after seeing what it demanded from Clark and from previous Liberal leader Gordon Campbell.

“No,” she said.

“I have no interest. I’ve watched what the job is.”

Polak, who was elected as a Liberal MLA in 2005, has never served in opposition before, but remarked that as a Surrey school trustee, “I’ve had some opposition-like experiences with the NDP.”

Langley East MLA Rich Coleman has been named the interim Liberal leader.

He said he currently has no plans to pursue the role on a more permanent basis.

“I told caucus this morning that I have no intention at this time to seek the leadership, and if I ever did change I would step down — and I don’t plan to step down,” Coleman said.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

(Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives photo)
LETTER: Think of seniors when casting vote

With the provincial election on Saturday, a local seniors group reminds voters to think about elders

A request for a tax exemption by the Langley Food Bank has prompted a review of the way such requests are handled by Langley City (Langley Advance Times file)
Langley City reviews tax breaks after turning request by food bank

Was one of four groups asking to be added to the tax exemption list

This 2020 electron microscope image made available by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases shows a Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 particle isolated from a patient, in a laboratory in Fort Detrick, Md. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-NIAID/NIH via AP
COVID case confirmed at Fort Langley Seniors Community

One of five new cases reported by Fraser health Authority

Langley’s Ken Cormack (L) and Craig Brown won the B.C. Match Play Net Championship on Sunday, Oct. 18 in Richmond (Courtesy Ken Cormack)
Two ‘dads’ from Langley win B.C. Match Play Net Championship of golf

‘We were just doing it to have fun and have a laugh’

John Horgan brought the NDP campaign to Langley on Wednesday, Oct. 21, just three days before the B.C. vote (Matthew Claxton/Langley Advance Times)
Horgan brings NDP campaign to Langley

Predicts gains, says people are looking at the party ‘differently’ after three years

Mary Foote (right) took part in the Gutsy Walk in August 2020 at the age of 104. She was joined by son in-law Clarence and daughter Edith Olson. (family photo)
Langley woman turns 105 on Oct. 25

In August, Mary Foote took part in the Gutsy Walk to battle Crohn’s and Colitis

RCMP. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
British Columbia man dies during ski trip near glacier west of Calgary

Kananaskis Public Safety and Alpine Helicopters responded around 2:30 p.m.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau arrives on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Monday, Oct. 19, 2020, following a week-long break for the House of Commons. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
One crisis after another for Trudeau since last federal election one year ago

It has been a year of unprecedented calamity and crisis

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Rio Tinto Alcan’s aluminum smelter at Kitimat competes against producers in the Middle East and Russia that have no carbon tax. (Rio Tinto)
B.C. carbon tax highest in Canada, export industries unprotected

B.C. NDP, B.C. Liberals say they’re looking at exemptions

In this file photo, snow is seen falling along the Coquihalla Highway. (Liam Harrap/Revelstoke Review)
Weather statement issued for Coquihalla, Hwy 3, as arctic front approaches

The early season snowfall expected to hit Fraser Valley, Friday, Oct. 23

Vancouver teacher suspended after swearing, touching students and complimenting underwear

McCabe touched students, including rubbing their backs and necks, touching their hair and hugging them

Most Read