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Dix laughs off Liberal ad supporting Green Party

BC NDP Leader Adrian Dix meets with NDP candidate Maurine Karagianis at her campaign office in Esquimalt ,during the British Columbia election campaign, May 10, 2013.

CHAD HIPOLITO/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Adrian Dix, who has been trying to attract Green voters to his B.C. New Democrats, is laughing off an apparent attempt by the B.C. Liberals to bolster the Green Party with a full-page newspaper ad touting that party's leader.

The ad was waiting for Mr. Dix when he arrived in the B.C. capital for his fourth election campaign visit. At dissolution, New Democrats had 10 of 14 Vancouver Island seats , and are aiming for all of them on May. 14 . But their prospects are threatened by the Green Party, which could split the vote on the centre-left.

Mr. Dix has said on many occasions that the New Democrats are the best choice for voters concerned about green issues, citing his party's stand against expansion of the Kinder-Morgan and Northern Gateway pipelines among other matters.

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The ad features the leaders of the Greens, NDP and Liberals under a headline asking, "Who is strong enough to stand up for B.C.?" It praises Green Leader Jane Sterk for "strong, clear views" about protecting the coast, and slams Mr. Dix for "flip-flopping" on the expansion of a Kinder-Morgan pipeline between Alberta and the Lower Mainland. It cites B.C. Liberal Leader Christy Clark's five "tough conditions" for heavy oil projects.

Mr. Dix dismissed the ad at his first news conference of the day, but seemed to be growing more indignant when he referenced it later during a campaign office visit in Esquimalt. "It's not about the principles of the campaign," Mr. Dix said. "Today you have Premier Clark arguing to support the Green Party. Why? She wants to be premier." A surprised Ms. Sterk said in an interview she found Liberal motivations baffling. "I think it might get votes my way, but I was going to get votes anyway."

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