NDP incumbent MLA Harry Bains has won in Surrey-Newton, topping BC Liberal candidate Paul Boparai and BC Green Party hopeful Asad Syed.
Bains tweeted his thanks to voters at 9:52 p.m. Saturday: “So incredibly grateful, humbled, and honoured – thank you to the amazing constituents of Surrey-Newton for trusting me to be your MLA and to all of my friends & family for their unwavering support – we’ll keep BC moving forward for everyone! #thankyou.”
As of 11 p.m. Saturday, Bains had 3,144 votes with 55 of 63 polls reporting, and the Liberals’ Boparai in second with 1,814 votes.
We’re tracking the results on the graphic below. Return here for the latest for this riding.
So incredibly grateful, humbled, and honoured – thank you to the amazing constituents of Surrey-Newton for trusting me to be your MLA and to all of my friends & family for their unwavering support – we'll keep BC moving forward for everyone! #thankyou pic.twitter.com/hE2qpIq4cO
— Harry Bains (@HarryBainsSN) October 25, 2020
Due to the pandemic, more Surrey residents have decided to vote by mail-in ballot than ever before. Election results won’t be finalized until after Nov. 6.
Bains won the Surrey-Newton riding in 2005, and every election since.
“There’s so much excitement and so much being done here in Surrey,” Bains told the Now-Leader soon after he was declared re-elected.
“The SkyTrain line is something important,” he said, “and voters like that we’re going to add a new medical school at Simon Fraser University in Surrey and, for the South Asian community, they are excited about the possibility of having a South Asian heritage museum built here.”
He said voters understood the need for the provincial election this fall.
“COVID isn’t ending, it’s starting, we are starting in a second phase, and even if the election was next spring or next fall, it would still be in the COVID time. (Voters) were concerned at the beginning, but they knew we had to move forward.”
Bains said the 2020 election campaign was very different.
“Door-knocking and talking to people face-to-face wasn’t available this year, and that’s the part I missed the most. But again, it was the constituents’ safety that was most important, so most discussions were on the phone and also virtual meetings.”
When he spoke to the Now-Leader at around 10:30 p.m., Bains said he was “out by myself,” with one staff member.
“Everyone was told to stay home, no big celebration,” he said.
Bains, a former sawmill worker who has lived in Surrey since 1978, got into politics after being involved with his workplace union, the IWA. In recent years he has served as B.C.’s Minister of Labour.
Surrey-Newton is the city’s smallest riding, geographically speaking.
In Surrey-Newton, 4,666 ballots were issued to the riding’s 29,660 registered voters. That’s about 16 per cent of eligible voters receiving vote-by-mail packages.
It has over the years occasionally toggled from NDP to the right, but has largely been dominated by the NDP.
In 2017 Bains won Surrey-Newton with 57.31 per cent of the vote.
In 2013, he received 56.33 per cent of the popular vote, defeating runner-up Liberal candidate Sukhminder Virk by 2,898 votes.
In 2001, Liberal Tony Bhullar trounced NDP MLA candidate Param Grewal in Surrey Newton, a riding that had been held by NDP cabinet minister Penny Priddy since Priddy snatched it from Social Credit premier Rita Johnston in 1991. Wisely choosing not to seek re-election in 2001, considering her governing party was destined for a province-wide smack-down from the electorate, Priddy thus avoided a fate similar to Johnston’s as B.C. voters raged against the NDP.
Surrey-Newton’s population is 58,340, according to most recent available statistics. It covers an area of 12 square kilometres. The average age of its residents is 34.7 years and for 64.71 per cent of all residents English is a second language.
We asked each candidate a simple question: “Why are you the best candidate in your riding?” We asked them to keep their pitch to 150 words. For those candidates who did not respond, we made every effort to tell you a little something about them or at the very least, send you in the right direction to learn about them.
Harry Bains has been a resident in Surrey for over 40 years where his two children were born and raised. He has seen Surrey grow into a thriving, diverse community and is proud to call Surrey home.
Elected four times as an MLA, Harry has been a strong voice in Victoria for Surrey residents. As the Minister of Labour, Harry has been working hard every day to make British Columbia workplaces the safest in the country and workers health and safety a priority.
Whether it’s making your life more affordable or making sure kids and families get the support they need, Harry’s priority is always you.
We did not receive a response.
I am the best candidate for the riding because I live in Surrey last 24 years.
I saw the rapid changes and development in Surrey and fully aware of the issues citizens are facing, my riding constituents suffering poor conditions in health care, schools, law and order, transportation, and environmental conditions.
As Green Party candidate, my commitment is to improve the conditions for seniors, hospitals, schools, end the subsidies to oil and gas companies, and spend the money to give assistance to renters, small businesses, childcare and provide carbon free environment for citizens.