Candidate hopefuls emerge for upcoming Victoria byelection

Donald Galloway, Murray Rankin, Paul Summerville first to throw hat in the ring, city councillor Marianne Alto won't run

Three potential candidates have emerged in the race for nomination in the upcoming Victoria federal byelection, while the four major parties work to finalize their nomination processes.

Donald Galloway, a University of Victoria law professor, will declare his intention to seek the Green party nomination on Thursday, The News has learned.

Murray Rankin, an environmental lawyer and former University of Victoria law professor, declared his intent to seek the NDP candidacy on Monday.

Rankin previously chaired the Land Conservancy of B.C. and is currently heading a panel of legal experts who are advising the provincial NDP on their opposition to the Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline project.

“I’m just appalled that (the pipeline is) a serious possibility,” Rankin said, adding he is concerned by the weakening of Canada’s environmental regulations.

“I sincerely fear the dismantling of all things I’ve come to love as a Canadian,” he said.

Last week, economist Paul Summerville announced his intention to seek the federal Liberal nomination.

Previously chief economist for RBC, Summerville ran for the NDP in Ontario in the 2006 federal election, but said the Liberals are better aligned with his economic and fiscal beliefs.

“Wealth is a critical condition for a successful social democracy,” he said. “That’s a hard thing to say wearing an NDP hat.”

Rankin said he believes the Capital Region’s secondary sewage treatment project is a done deal under federal and provincial regulations, while Summerville said there is still a conversation to be had about the “top-down” decision.

“It was done in a way that was ignorant of the science,” Summerville said.

On Monday, prominent pro-NDP Victoria councillor Marianne Alto confirmed she will not be seeking the federal seat.

“Right now, my priorities are my city and my family,” Alto said in a statement.

“When I sought a seat at city council, and the CRD, I did so with clear objectives,” she said, adding she has unfinished business at the local and regional levels.

No Conservative nominees have yet emerged, but the local riding association met for the first time on Monday night to discuss their nomination process.

All parties will soon begin their formal processes for selecting respective candidates.

The byelection date has not yet been set by the federal government, but it is expected to take place in conjunction with two others in Calgary Centre and Durham, Ont. near the end of November.

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