Candidate Randy Kamp won his fourth term as MP Monday, winning the Pitt Meadows-Maple Ridge-Mission riding by almost 10,000 votes as Conservative blue swept the country.
Kamp gave his victory speech an hour and 45 minutes after polls closed at 7 p.m.
“I felt there was a growing appetite for a majority,” said Kamp as the crowd cheered the Conservative sweep of 166 seats.
“It’s a better result than I thought it would be. It shows that people were really tired of elections and wanted stability.”
At the final tally, Kamp had garnered 28,803 votes over NDP candidate Craig Speirs’ 18,835. Liberal Mandeep Bhuller came a distant third, taking 2,739 votes, while Green Peter Tam wasn’t far behind with 2,629.
Kamp said the Conservative majority will allow his government to pass key legislation like abolishing the gun registry and other crime bills.
“I thought the results would be a little closer,” he added.
Kamp pushed his lead from the 2008 election, over his nearest rival Speirs by more than 2,000 votes.
Speirs, a Maple Ridge councillor and Mike Bocking, who ran against Kamp in 2008, congratulated Kamp on his victory in person.
“Kamp ran a good campaign. He has a block of support in Pitt Meadows-Maple Ridge-Mission and that’s shone through. You can’t argue with the voter,” said Speirs.
The mood at the headquarters for NDP candidate was quiet, after he conceded defeat.
The local riding just isn’t quite ready to shed its Conservative skin, said Speirs.
“We’ve got something to build on,” he said to the crowd of approximately 30 supporters gathered at the Maple Ridge NDP headquarters. “We came a lot closer this time.”
Speirs, a four-term Maple Ridge councillor, singled out former NDP candidate Bocking for his help during the four-week campaign, which saw a near implosion of the Liberal party across the nation. In several of the individual local riding polling stations, Liberal candidate Mandeep Bhuller was earning fewer than 10 votes.
“I feel your pain,” Speirs said to the dejected volunteers. “I think we did a really good job. We now have a good base.”
The retired Liquor Distribution Branch employee also said his loss wasn’t the worst thing that could have happened, given the party federally has formed the official opposition for the first time.
“We’ll be holding [the Conservatives] feet to the fire,” he noted.
Bocking said this election represents a “paradigm shift,” and that the NDP is “now a more national party.”
Regarding the massive Liberal losses, Bocking attributed this to a “perception that the party doesn’t particularly stand for anything anymore. The NDP or the Conservatives stand for something identifiable.”
The Conservative now have a solid majority in the House of Commons with 166 seats. The NDP will form the official opposition with 102 seat, while the Liberals won 34, the Bloc Québécois have four and the Green Party has one seat.
Voter turnout for the election was slight higher than 2008 with 53,093 of 88,555 registered electors in the riding (60 per cent) casting a ballot, compared to 51, 308 during the last election.
Randy Kamp (Conservative) – 26,512
Mike Bocking (NDP) – 16,894
Mike Gildersleeve (Green) – 3,833
Dan Olson (Liberal) – 3,394
Randy Kamp (Conservative) – 20,946
Mike Bocking (NDP) – 18,225
Keith Henry (Liberal) – 10,556
Robert Hornsey (Green) – 1,694