EDITORIAL – Premier’s apology to NDP was the ‘correct’ thing to do

Premier speaks to convention Friday. (UBCM photo)

Premier Christy Clark. (UBCM file photo)

An Armchair Mayor editorial by Mel Rothenburger.

PREMIER CHRISTY CLARK brought new meaning to the term “political correctness” on Friday (Feb. 10, 2017) as she apologized to B.C. NDP Leader John Horgan for accusing the New Democrats of hacking the B.C. Liberals’ website.

Political correctness as in, politically smart. Correct also in the sense that she corrected a mistake she had committed against a political opponent.

It took her five days. As recently as Thursday she brushed off Horgan’s demand for an apology by saying she wasn’t sure why his feelings were hurt. Friday’s development came as a bit of a surprise, since apologizing to the other side is pretty much like chewing glass.

As it turned out, though, in the end she had little choice — it was just that she was the only one who didn’t seem to know it. Horgan’s indignation aside, the writing on the wall became crystal clear when Vancouver Province columnist Michael Smith wrote that he originally heard about problems with the Liberals’ website from Independent Delta South MLA Vicki Huntington, who told him one of her staff had discovered there was confidential information on the site that was sitting there without password protection.

That removed any possible doubt that the NDP hadn’t hacked the Liberals; in fact, it indicates there was no hacking done at all.

So, the evidence made it imperative that Clark apologize. The apology also happens to greatly soften what was going to be a rough ride in the Legislature when it resumes next week.

The situation was a dream come true for Horgan and his party. Questions of the “When will the premier apologize for her false accusations against the Opposition?” were pretty much writing themselves. And, they would have kept the story going for many more days and possibly weeks.

Now, about all Horgan can do is stand up and thank the premier for seeing the error of her ways.

Of course, it could be more than political smarts that motivated her to finally apologize — let us give the premier credit for genuinely seeing that it was the right thing to do.

After all, her apology was unequivocal. As she said, she made a mistake. “And I want to do as much as I can to make that right today to offer my apology to John, which I’ve done.”

Her mistake has hurt her party at a critical time, but could have hurt even more. Apologizing for it was the correct thing to do.



About Mel Rothenburger (5787 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

1 Comment on EDITORIAL – Premier’s apology to NDP was the ‘correct’ thing to do

  1. Apologizing to Horgan was the right thing to do? Really? That’s all? She accuses him wrongfully of breaking the law … and an apology is all it takes to fix it?

    Is this her first offence? Didn’t she and Lake and others blame researchers for breaching health records, fire them, have one commit suicide only to find out that … OOOPS! She was wrong. And even that was not the only time this has happened.

    When she made a big deal out of pretending that she would start an anti-bullying campaign people laughed, except in the media. I guess you believed her. As soon as the headlines die down, so did her desire to end bullying in schools. It’s the biggest case of projection ever seen in politics: She and her government have written a manual on how to bully, and you – and others in the media – just let it go.

    How many transgressions do we allow this bully to gat away with when she decides to shoot from the lip? Both SHE and HER STAFF who first made the charge should resign. THEY OWE IT TO THE VOTERS to resign.

    As for the apology to Horgan, it seems Clark has successfully convinced you – and others in the media – that he was the only person transgressed by her statement. She slighted all voters, be the left or right. She SHOULD have apologized to the US and made sure that we know that whereas Horgan has acted honourably throughout this fiasco, she and her party have not. She owes that apology to me, to you, and to all voters.

    I’m not holding my breath that she will do that, or that people like you will demand it.

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