Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Support Quality Journalism
The Globe and Mail
First Access to Latest
Investment News
Collection of curated
e-books and guides
Inform your decisions via
Globe Investor Tools
Just$1.99
per week
for first 24 weeks

Enjoy unlimited digital access
Enjoy Unlimited Digital Access
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){window.requestAnimationFrame(function() {var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))});}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1); // via darwin-bg var slideIndex = 0; carousel(); function carousel() { var i; var x = document.getElementsByClassName("subs_valueprop"); for (i = 0; i < x.length; i++) { x[i].style.display = "none"; } slideIndex++; if (slideIndex> x.length) { slideIndex = 1; } x[slideIndex - 1].style.display = "block"; setTimeout(carousel, 2500); }

Conservative Leader John Cummins took the helm of B.C.’s third party in May of 2011.

John Lehmann/The Globe and Mail

A crucial vote on the leadership of the divided B.C. Conservative Party has not ended party infighting.

Just over two weeks after party members voted against a review for John Cummins, the embattled leader issued an ultimatum on Sunday to his detractors: Join him, or resign.

"I am unwavering in my dedication to the B.C. Conservatives, and fully intend to lead my party into the next general election," he said in a statement.

Story continues below advertisement

"Those few but vocal party members who are critical of my leadership and do not support me have until ... noon, Wednesday, to either get onside or quit our party and join another."

The provincial party will refund the membership fees of any person who leaves, Mr. Cummins said. The party will also return any financial donations made within the last year.

More than 70 per cent of party members who voted turned down a review for Mr. Cummins at their September convention, which would have forced him to step down. Roughly one-third of eligible members cast ballots on Sept. 22. About 245 members attended the annual general meeting.

But the victory was shortlived, with the Tories' only sitting MLA, John Van Dongen, quitting in protest. He now sits in the legislature as an Independent.

A group calling itself Friends of the B.C. Conservative Party, led by then-party vice-president Ben Besler, headed the rival group.

Mr. Besler left the party last week, joining the B.C. Liberals.

"You know I have been in conversations with the BC Liberal party for the past few weeks," he told Vancouver radio station CKNW at the time. "The reality is that I had made a conscious decision to leave the B.C. Conservative party. I have completely lost faith in that party as it is well documented."

Story continues below advertisement

After the vote results came in, Mr. Cummins told reporters no leader can expect 100 per cent support and stated he was satisfied with the results.

Party President Al Siebring said the party encourages open discussion and a diversity of opinion.

But he said the leadership issue has been settled, and he doesn't want the party to be distracted by a small group of dissidents.

He said in an interview a letter has been floating around still calling into question Mr. Cummins' leadership.

"Fundamentally, to me, the question is can we continue to move forward with this sniping from the sidelines? No, we don't want to do that," he said.

He believes the detractors represent less than 8 per cent of the party's membership.

Story continues below advertisement

Mr. Siebring sent e-mails to Tory constituency association presidents Saturday night, stating the process is at stake.

"If you can't live with John Cummins as leader, that's fine. But you know what? Then just do the honourable thing and resign."

Mr. Siebring said the party's board hasn't yet discussed what they will do should the dissidents not take up Mr. Cummins' offer.

There are about 4,000 B.C. Conservatives members.

B.C. is scheduled to hold its next election on May 14, 2013.

Report an error
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies