EDITORIAL – Stone still has a shot despite stormy days late in campaign

Todd Stone — still a contender.

An editorial by Mel Rothenburger.

AS BC LIBERALS begin voting on a new leader today, one of the big questions is whether the waves that have rocked Todd Stone’s boat this week will swamp his aspirations.

It hasn’t been a good week for Stone — first there was the ICBC “dumpster fire,” as Attorney General David Eby put it, surrounding the state of the auto insurer’s finances.

That one’s a question of how much responsibility is on Stone’s shoulders, since he was the transportation minister when things really started heading south with ICBC’s revenues.

Then came the membership brouhaha. Four of his opponents — Andrew Wilkinson, Michael Lee, Dianne Watts and Mike de Jong — are demanding the party explain details of rejected memberships gathered by Stone’s campaign.

“In the interest of transparency,” according to a letter to party brass.

The party says it will do no such thing, but does say all the candidates have had memberships rejected.

Seems a little odd that the four opponents carried out their threat to go public just before the vote. Surely they knew the party’s rules.

Could it be that Stone is seen as a genuine threat to win?

Who knows, but up till now, a lot of pundits have been predicting that Stone at least has a shot.

He’s got youth on his side, being in his mid-40s, and no shortage of experience.

That gives him a certain appeal and enables him to talk about the need for change within the party, a new style and all that.

As the leadership voting continues through Saturday, the ranked balloting and points-distribution system among ridings should help Stone overcome whatever disadvantages he might have faced due to the concentration of members at the Coast. If he can pick up enough second and third votes, and if the points system works for him, he’ll be a contender to come up the middle.

So despite the events this week, I’m still with the pundits who believe Stone has a shot.

Mel Rothenburger’s Armchair Mayor editorials appear twice daily Mondays through Thursdays on CFJC- TV. His Armchair Mayor column is published Saturdays on and CFJC Today. Contact him at

About Mel Rothenburger (6473 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.

3 Comments on EDITORIAL – Stone still has a shot despite stormy days late in campaign

  1. Hi campaign just gave back almost 1300 memberships that were not accepted due to irregularities – his comment to day in the Van Province that the race for a new leader is between him and Watts shows an arrogance that is embarrassing – Stone’s denial that he never saw the preliminary report that ICBC was in dire straits is also just an ongoing same old liberals with a younger face. Nope Stone is not my choice. Actually was my last choice.

  2. Todd Stone = Christy Clark in a suit, with a hair cut. No more, no less. The ballot should have a ” none of the above ” box to check. It would be interesting to see just how many Liberals would check it.

  3. He has experience alright.The wrong kind. Learned it from his ex boss.She was a champ story teller. Has he got a shot?Well the folks voting for leader are not all from Kamloops thank goodness.Would I vote for him?Give your head a shake.He was a lousy Highways minister.Premier, no thanks.

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