There won’t be a provincial election until 2013, but the NDP is ready for the campaign.
Mark Olsen was selected as the Vernon-Monashee candidate during a nomination meeting that also included Nikki Inouye Sunday.
“I am not in this race to just get elected,” said Olsen, who will go up against Liberal MLA Eric Foster in the next election.
“I am not in this race to get the position. I am in this race to be effective and I want to be judged on my effectiveness.”
Olsen is pushing to have the two upper floors at Vernon Jubilee Hospital’s patient care tower completed so more acute care beds can be opened.
“I will state here and now if the hospital bed issue is not addressed by the time the election is called I will stake my political career on obtaining them,” he said.
“If elected and we form government I will guarantee resolving this issue and I want to be held accountable to that promise.”
Olsen represented the NDP in the 2009 provincial election and he is the president of the CUPE local with the Vernon School District.
Inouye, the federal NDP candidate in the May 2011 election, is hopeful the party can beat Foster.
“We will work together, and we will win this riding in 2013,” she said.
Seventy-three members turned out for the nomination meeting Sunday.