Two B.C. Conservative candidates running in Burnaby - Christine Clarke in the Burnaby-Lougheed riding and Wayne Marklund in the Burnaby-North riding - will be on the ballot on May 14, but there will be a blank space where their party name would usually be.
The two candidates are among 11 unaffiliated candidates running in the election. Unaffiliated candidates are different from independents, according to Don Main, spokesperson for Elections B.C.
"They are not affiliated," Main said. "What that means is, there's a difference from candidates who run as independents, who sign a solemn declaration that they are independent of any political party, whereas an unaffiliated candidate would have nothing under their name on the ballot but can be affiliated with a registered or even an unregistered party. In this instance, they still could have Conservative on their campaign signage."
As the deadline for filing registered political party endorsement forms has passed, there is no way for the candidates to have the party name added to the ballot at this point, he added.
Four current B.C. Conservative candidates were listed as unaffiliated in the candidates' list released by Elections B.C. on Saturday; the other two are Bill Clarke, a former MP running in Vancouver-Quilchena, and Manuel (Mike) Pratas, who is running in Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows.
Jaclyn Laic, the public relations representative for the B.C. Conservatives, said there was some kind of glitch with the paperwork but was not sure what the issue was, adding the party's campaign manager, Jeff Bridge, would have more details.
She confirmed the candidates are running as Conservatives.
"Yes, they are in fact B.C. Conservative candidates," she said, adding they will be Conservative MLAs if they are elected.
Bridge responded to the NOW via email, saying the party was still looking into how the issue would be handled.
"They are Conservative candidates and important members of our team. Nothing will change," he wrote. "There will be no difference how they are treated, period."
In addition to these candidates, three B.C. Conservative candidates who were recently fired from the party are also running as unaffiliated candidates:
Mischa Popoff for Boundary-Similkameen, Ian Tootill for Vancouver-False Creek, and Ron Herbert for Vancouver-West End.
One B.C. NDP candidate who was also fired is listed as unaffiliated, as well - Dayleen Van Ryswyk, who is running in the Kelowna-Mission riding.
Jeff Sprague, the former B.C. Conservative candidate for North Vancouver-Lonsdale, who was also let go by the party, was not on the list of candidates. Allan John Molyneaux was listed as the B.C. Conservative candidate for that riding.
The other unaffiliated candidates on the list are John Ford for Kamloops-North Thompson, Matt William Begley for Surrey-Cloverdale and Ali Zaidi for Surrey-Panorama.
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