I’m tired and it’s been a long day. I spent 12 hours scrutineering at Renfrew Community Centre, ensuring that Vision got its supporters to the polls. I hope it isn’t a reflection of my hard work, but Suzanne Anton received 50 more votes than Gregor in my poll – which had me freaked out on my bike ride home because I was worried it was going to be a trend across the city. It didn’t help that when I got home the initial results had Anton in the lead.
But now that the results are all in, I’m extremely happy. Gregor beat Anton by a sizable margin, every Vision candidate won, and city council is dominated by environmentally friendly councillors. Now we can focus on 3 more years of bike lanes, food carts, and green initiatives.
My random thoughts on…
The end result is pretty close to my endorsed slate, which I didn’t actually vote for. I debated for a long time what do to with my 10th council vote (between Affleck, Garossino, and Carr) and ended up voting for Carr. I’m happy that she won, but would have been happier with Ellen Woodsworth, who finished in 11th. The biggest disappointment for me is RJ Aquino. RJ’s response to not being elected “At least now I know I’ll have time to play Skyrim”. I wanted to see what he could do on council.
There were some interesting trends in the mayoral and city council results. In the mayor’s race, several parts of the city flipped from last election. Parts of the east-side went NPA and parts of the west-side went Vision. I don’t know what larger issues were at play here (maybe green policies are popular in Point Gray; maybe Anton is more popular in the Chinese community), but I do have some interesting data from poll #60 around Renfrew Community Centre, which I volunteered at.
Most of the voters here were Chinese. Last election, Gregor won this poll, but this election Suzanne Anton beat Gregor by about 10%. The top city council candidates in this poll were:
Jang, Kerry (Vision) – 353 votes
Wong, Francis (NPA) – 351 votes
Louie, Raymond (Vision) – 344 votes
Yuen, Bill (NPA) – 342 votes
Tang, Tony (Vision) – 324 votes
Who just happen to be the 5 Chinese candidates running for Vision and the NPA. The next top 10 candidates are the remaining NPA and Vision candidates roughly sorted in alphabetical order (Affleck, Ball, Carangi, Charko, Deal, Reimer, Stevenson, Klassen, Meggs, McCreery). I’m not sure why Bickerton didn’t make the cut.
As much as I hate the idea of ‘ethnic voting’, it obviously played a role in this area.
It is also interesting to see that my home polling station, #35 around the Olympic Village, voted for Gregor Robertson. I’m not sure if this is a reflection of the green ideals of the people living here or backlash against the NPA for trying to politicize our neighbourhood, but I was surprised to see this.
There was a lot of buzz online and in the media about Neighbourhoods for Sustainable Vancouver and independent candidate Sandy Garossino. In the end, neither of them captured the attention of the voters, finishing well after the lowest NPA and COPE candidates. Speaking of which, I was sad to see COPE lose most of its seats. I was hoping its alliance with Vision would give it enough votes, but that strategy obviously failed.
This is a pleasant surprise. 20,538 more votes were cast this election than in 2008 – a 16.5% increase. That’s awesome! Too bad the media will likely focus on a disappointing overall turnout of 34% – but the problem with that figure is that it presumes that the number of eligible voters is accurate (the denominator in the equation). Unfortunately it is not because people rarely get removed from the list of eligible voters. I witnessed several voters today bringing in voting cards from people who haven’t lived in Vancouver for a long time or were sadly dead. Those people are counted in the 66% of non-voting Vancouverites even though they can’t vote.