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Van Dongen quits B.C. Conservatives

Abbotsford South MLA John van Dongen (left) announces in May he was quitting the B.C. Liberals and joining John Cummins and the B.C. Conservatives. - Black Press files
Abbotsford South MLA John van Dongen (left) announces in May he was quitting the B.C. Liberals and joining John Cummins and the B.C. Conservatives.
— image credit: Black Press files

B.C. Conservative leader John Cummins had less than an hour to enjoy the 71 per cent support for his leadership at Saturday's leadership vote before his party's lone MLA walked out and announced he is quitting the party.

Van Dongen, who quit the B.C. Liberals in March and joined the resurgent B.C. Conservatives, said he was disappointed that Cummins didn't reach out to critics who have been calling for a leadership review in recent weeks. Van Dongen also criticized the resurgent B.C. Conservatives' campaign in the Chilliwack-Hope by-election in April.

John Martin, the B.C. Conservative candidate who finished third in Chilliwack-Hope, rocked the party Friday by announcing he has joined the B.C. Liberals and will run for them in the Chilliwack constituency where long-time MLA John Les is retiring.

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