Andrew Weaver annouced today that he is quitting the BC Green caucus to sit as an independent. However his reason does not make sense to me: “Sitting as an Independent will allow me to better balance work with the competing health demands affecting my family,” Weaver said. “I remain committed to the stability of this minority government and to CASA (the confidence and supply agreement with the NDP).” (https://vancouversun.com/news/local-news/former-b-c-green-leader-andrew-...)
He said he has been thinking for months about how to balance his commitments under the confidence agreement with the NDP government, his desire to grow the Green Party and “increasing health demands affecting my family.”
“I feel it is best for all parties if I continue my legislative work as an independent member, prior to the beginning of the spring legislative session,” he said. ...
The Greens, who held three seats in the legislature prior to Weaver's announcement, have an agreement to support the province's minority NDP government.
With Weaver sitting as an Independent, there will be 42 B.C. Liberals, 41 New Democrats, two Greens and two Independents in the house. The other Independent is Speaker Darryl Plecas.
Weaver, who led the party to a three-seat breakthrough in the 2017 provincial election, said it’s important that the party develop a new vision and voice independent from his.
“My presence in the B.C. Green caucus could hinder that independence,” he said. “Sitting as an independent will also give me a better opportunity during the upcoming legislative sitting to attend to personal matters, including a number of health challenges affecting my family.” ...
The party’s interim leader, Adam Olsen, said the party supports Weaver’s decision to quit the party “so he can attend to the various health challenges affecting his family.”
Weaver endured a bout of vertigo last year related to an inner ear problem.
Olsen said the party’s work to reduce polarization and restore trust has been demanding, “and because of this we recognize that a person’s commitment to their family needs to come before those to their caucus.”
I get the health aspect of this and I get that he needs to reduce his workload because of this. I would even get it if he said he had to resign for health reasons. However, leaving the Greens, means his work for the party must be done by the remaining two members. If he is well enough to carry on as MLA and do some political work, even at a reduced rate, it would help reduce the burden on the other two if he stayed as a Green. It sounds to me more likely that there is a significant difference of opinion between him and the two other Green MLAs over the direction of the party, and possibly over their support of the BC NDP government. In other words, it sounds like both Weaver and the other MLAs are trying to paper over their differences in order to minimize any political problems.
His statement that he remains committed to the stability of the NDP minority government, suggests that perhaps the two remaining Green MLAs are not, at least not as solidly in support over the two parties' four year agreement.
This might even impact the selection of a new federal Green leader.
This could raise problems and possibly opportunities for the provincial Greens and NDP and even the federal Greens and NDP. The Vancouver Sun article on this ends with "more to come", suggesting this story is far from over.