First full day of B.C.'s election campaign begins amid COVID-19 pandemic

VANCOUVER — British Columbia's election is entering its first full day with the three party leaders embarking on a campaign against the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic.

B.C. Premier John Horgan made the snap election call on Monday, conceding that he struggled with whether it's the right time for a campaign because of the pandemic.

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As the leader of a minority NDP government, Horgan says he decided the province needs more stability to face the health and economic challenges ahead and waiting another year to hold the election when it was scheduled would be wasting time.

B.C. Liberal Leader Andrew Wilkinson and the Green party's Sonia Furstenau criticized Horgan's decision, saying the election is unnecessary during the pandemic.

The campaign begins as the number of cases of COVID-19 rises in the province, with record daily infection rates recorded.

Voters go to the polls on Oct. 24.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 22, 2020.

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