An editorial by Mel Rothenburger.
THE B.C. LIBERALS will become “B.C. United” if members so decide in coming weeks.
B.C. United has emerged as the leading choice for a new name for the party. Pundits are already joking that it sounds like a soccer franchise. In fact, a North Vancouver high school basketball team goes by that name.
It’s a bit awkward for a political party — will we call them “the Uniteds”? And while omitting the word ‘party’ from the name was obviously intentional, it’s bound to be known as “the B.C. United party” rather than simply B.C. United.
Whatever, it’s the best they could come up with out of 2,000 ideas.
This is the party’s third try at a new name. According to a news release, “B.C. United is a fresh alternative that expresses the Party’s longstanding commitment to unity across a broad coalition of party members, as well as highlighting British Columbia front and centre in the name choice.”
Okay. Maybe we’ll get used to it.
Assuming members do approve the change, it might take a while to put in place. David Eby, assumed to be the next leader of the B.C. NDP, is rumoured to favour another snap election.
That would mean it will be fought between the NDP and the B.C. Liberals, not B.C. United.
Will a change in name make any difference to party fortunes? Will it truly help separate it from any perception that it’s just a provincial branch of the federal Liberals? Will voters take it as a sign the party is suddenly new and fresh?
Not likely. Party members can call themselves anything they like, but if they expect a party of old-time veteran politicians who have been around for years to suddenly be bright and shiny by putting on new clothes, they’ll likely be disappointed.
But, hey, there’s nothing to lose. If it doesn’t work out, they can always put together a soccer team.
I’m Mel Rothenburger, the Armchair Mayor.
Mel Rothenburger is a former mayor of Kamloops and a retired newspaper editor. He is a regular contributor to CFJC Today, publishes the ArmchairMayor.ca opinion website, and is a director on the Thompson-Nicola Regional District board. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.