(Black Press Media files)

(Black Press Media files)

Significant leads led media to call the B.C. election early, expert says

Nearly half a million mail-in ballots are still to be counted

When the B.C. election began to be called less than an hour after polls closed on Saturday (Oct. 24), some voters were flummoxed. Those who voted by mail wondered if perhaps their vote was meaningless.

But according to the director of academic products at Canadian STEM research and education centre Maplesoft, there’s a science to it.

“You don’t always have all the votes in when you make those calls,” said Karishma Punwani. About 1.82 million people cast a ballot in this fall’s election out of a total of 3.49 million registered voters. Of those, 546,877 cast a ballot on Election Day and another 670,324 voted in advanced polls – and those are the votes available to be counted on Saturday night.

Another 525,000 mail-in ballots and 85,000 absentee ones will be counted no sooner than 13 days after Oct. 24, as per legislation. The final vote count is scheduled to begin Nov. 6, with the election writ to be returned on Nov. 16.

However, that’s not likely to change much about the projected BC NDP majority.

“There’s only 10-12 ridings where it’s a close call,” Punwani said. Those ridings include Abbotsford-Mission, Chilliwack-Kent, Richmond South Centre and Vernon-Monashee, some of them separated by barely one per cent.

“In many of the other ridings there was a significant lead… over the other party,” she added.

As for the 525,000 mail-in ballots, Punwani said they shouldn’t be concerned – at the end of the day, those votes will be counted and could still change the winning candidate.

“But something to keep in mind is it might swing to the Green Party, it might swing to to the Liberals but it might swing further to the NDP,” she noted.

Current preliminary results have the NDP with 55 seats, the Liberals with 29 and the Greens with three. To win a majority, a party must get at least 44 seats.

READ MORE: Horgan’s B.C. majority came with historically low voter turnout


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

BC politicsBC Votes 2020

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

CNOY is a family friendly walk/fundraiser hosted by Canadian Mental Health Association for the Kootenays to help those who are hungry, homeless and hurting. Our goal is to raise at least $20,000 and we need your help! The CNOY is set for Feb. 20.
There’s a place for everyone: Coldest Night of the Year walk is back

CNOY fundraising walk to raise money for charities serving people experiencing homelessness, hurt, and hunger set for Feb. 20

1914
It happened this week in 1914

Jan. 17-23: Items compiled by Dave Humphrey from the archived newspapers held at the Cranbrook History Centre and Archives

Kootenay-Columbia MP Rob Morrison speaks during Question Period in the House of Commons. File photo.
MP Morrison calls Keystone XL permit cancellation ‘devastating news’

Kootenay-Columbia MP reacts to the Conservative Party’s removal of a controversial Ontario MP

Interior Health reported 91 new COVID-19 cases in the region Jan. 20, 2021 and three additional deaths. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
95 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health, two deaths

Another member of Vernon’s Noric House has passed

City Hall in Cranbrook.
City council pre-approves 2021 Capital Works Program

City council has given budget pre-approval for the 2021 Capital Works Program,… Continue reading

Toronto Public Health nurse Lalaine Agarin sets up for mass vaccination clinic in Toronto, Jan. 17, 2021. B.C. is set to to begin its large-scale immunization program for the general public starting in April. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
B.C.’s COVID-19 mass vaccinations expected to start in April

Clinics to immunize four million people by September

Surrey provincial court. (File photo: Tom Zytaruk)
New COVID-19 protocols set for provincial courthouses

The new rules were issued on Jan. 21, and took effect immediately

Police in Vancouver looking for male suspect who allegedly spat and attacked a store manager for not wearing a mask, at 7-Eleven near Alma Street and West 10th Avenue just before noon on Dec. 17, 2020. (Vancouver police handout)
VIDEO: Man spits on 7-Eleven manager over mask rule, sparking Vancouver police probe

‘Unfortunately, the store manager sustained a cut to his head during the assault’

The Vancouver-based SAR team successfully rescued two lost snowshoers off of the west side of Tim Jones Peak in the early morning of Monday, Jan. 19. (North Shore Rescue photo)
B.C.’s busiest SAR team raises alarm after 2021 begins with fatality, multiple rescues

‘People beyond ski resort areas of Seymour, Grouse, and Cypress go without cell reception,’ SAR warns

Police are searching for an alleged sex offender, Nicole Edwards, who they say has not returned to her Vancouver halfway house. (Police handout)
Police hunt for woman charged in ‘horrific’ assault who failed to return to Surrey halfway house

Call 911 immediately if you see alleged sex offender Nicole Edwards, police say

A screenshot from a local Instagram account video. The account appeared to be frequented by Mission students, and showed violent videos of students assaulting and bullying other students.
Parents, former students describe ‘culture of bullying’ in Mission school district

Nearly two dozen voices come forward speaking of abuse haunting the hallways in Mission, B.C.

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Vaccine rollout is focused on health care workers first, especially those dealing with long-term care facilities. (Nathan Denette - Canadian Press)
General public shouldn’t expect vaccines until fall: Interior Health South Okanagan Similkameen

Interior Health focused on vaccinating long-term and first-line care workers

Most Read