Election Prediction Project

Surrey-Green Timbers
British Columbia 2005

Update/Mise à jour:
9:52 PM 15/05/2005

Prediction Changed
La prévision a changé
9:52 PM 15/05/2005

Constituency Profile

(Links? See sponsorship details.)
Amanda Boggan
Democratic Reform BC
Ravi Chand
Communist of BC
Harjit Singh Daudharia
Sue Hammell
BC Liberal
Brenda Locke
Emerged Democracy of B.C.
Rob Norberg
Green Party
Sebastian Sajda

BC Liberals:
LOCKE, Hon. Brenda
1996 Re-distribution:
Dev. from Quota:5.63%
Area (km2):17
Pop Density:2929.41

2001 Result:
(2001 Prediction)


1996 Result (redistributed):


Surrounding Ridings:
Delta North

11 05 05 S. Bains
I generally agree with Fabian's analysis - however, I believe that Brenda Locke will be much further down in support among Indo-Cdn voters. It is simply not possible for her to make up the difference in the non-Indo-Cdn community. Sue Hammell will be the next MLA for Surrey - Newton. Stay tuned for Locke to mount a civic campaign for Council in November.
10 05 05 Fabian B
From speaking to an Indo-Canadian resident living in this riding today, I now think that Hammell has an edge over Locke especially among Sikh Canadian voters. I passed through a residential neighbourhood directly across from Green Timbers Park today which contained many upscale middle class homes and witnessed plenty of Hammel NDP campaign signs here. According to my contact, Hammell's innovative use of Punjabi on her campaign signs resonates well with Indo-Candian voters here. From past experience, I know that most Indo-Canadians are passionate about politics and will definitely vote come May 17. Hence, the Indo-Canadian vote--in combination with the traditional blue collar NDP base--could well be the difference for an NDP win here nothwitstanding the recent economic boom within this riding.
Surrey Memorial Hospital(SMH)'s well publicised difficulties also hurt Locke's re-election chances because this Hospital is located directly in the heart of her riding and the NDP can point to Campbell's neglect of Surrey's well known need for a second hospital for the problems(even if this problem had its genesis under previous NDP governments who failed completely to increase SMH's operating room capacity in order to cope with increased patient workloads). As an Aside, The Mustel poll released this Tuesday gives the Liberals 45% support versus 40% for the NDP and 12% for the Greens. While an increase in Green support may hurt newer NDP candidates running in other ridings, I now think it may not make a difference in a predominantly blue collar riding like Green Timbers with a well known candidate like Hammell. The decline in the Liberal lead from 7-8% before the TV debate to only 5% provincewide would definitely seal the deal for Hammell's return to Victoria.
With these changes, I now revise my prediction here to an NDP gain but acknowledge that Locke can still hang on provided Campbell's recent attacks on Carole James' past ties to the previous NDP administration restores the provincewide Liberal lead to a more substantial 7 or 8% gap, rather than just 5%. That is the key for a Locke hold here. A small 5% Liberal lead is just not good enough for Locke's re-election prospects due to the unique demographics of this riding.
08 05 05 Interested Voter
Interesting posts. Not to forget that, not only is there a Green candidate, there is also a Marijuana Party candidate and a Communist. That equals a significant split in the left vote, and no split in the right. BTW, Former Unity Leader Chris Delaney has publicly thrown his support behind Brenda Locke. This isn't an old grudge match, Locke is simply head and shoulders above Hammell, who never caught fire even when she was elected.
08 05 05 Fabian B
This Friday's(May 6) Vancouver Sun and local Surrey Leader newspapers provide useful information on the potential goings on in this riding. Page A8 of the Sun printed a summary of all the candidates running in BC's 79 ridings; significantly, this time around--unlike 2001--there is no Unity Party candidate running in Green Timbers. In addition, there is a Green Party candidate here this time--unlike in 2001. According to the 2001 Provincial election results, Locke won 49% support versus 36% support for Hammell and 7% for the fledgling Unity Party candidate.
These figures are helpful in signalling that even though there will be an increased base of support for Hammell(due to previously absent NDP supporters in 2001 voting in 2005) and likely a significant swing from Locke's previous 49% support level(of perhaps 15%) towards the NDP--since this riding is traditionally blue collar to protest against the BC Liberal' policies, Locke can still count on capturing a majority of the Unity Party's previous 7% support. Hence, there will be no splitting of the Right Wing vote as in 2001. The Greens will likely siphon off some votes from the NDP. In the most recent Ipsos Reid poll just prior to the leaders TV Debate, the BC Liberals had 46% support; the NDP at 39% and the Greens at 13%. Personally, I thought that the premier way too defensive in the debate and Adrien Carr and Carole James were the main winners. Subsequently, according to Vaughn Palmer's Saturday's(May 7) Vancouver Sun article, the gap between the 2 main parties has closed somewhat. If this holds, Locke is surely doomed because Hammell can probably count on a minimum support base of 42-45% while Locke's support woul fall to 42% from 49% if one anticipates a 15% decline in Locke's 2001 numbers. However, most of the former Unity's supporters will almost surely drift towards Locke since Unity was pretty Right Wing on the political spectrum in 2001 and Locke has been reasonably effective effective in her riding--by getting the Central City Tower filled up for instance. So, Locke can perhaps count on a base of 42-47% assuming that she attains a minimum of 5% of the 7% of the Unity vote. This would still make her competitive in this riding versus Locke.
However, there is another major leader's 'debate' on CKNW come Monday and Palmer says that Campbell will now probably remove the gloves and come out swinging against Carole James and criticise the old NDP record in order to restore the previous difference between the 2 parties. If he does reasonably well and restores the 7% province wide gap, then Green Timber's fate is still touch and go for either Hammell or Locke. Ironically, however, Adrienne Carr's creditable performance in the first leader's TV debate may well hurt Hammell's chances more by boosting Sajda's support. If the Green candidate here wins something in the order of 7-10% support, then Hammell and Locke's support base would be practically equal and Locke could still squeese through to win)
Anyway, I must say that the Locke campaign is highly organized: I keep seeing many of her campaign signs on major roads such as 88 and 100 Avenue and this increased visibility will surely help her in the polling booth. Also, the recent selling out of the first Infinity Central City High Rise Condo Tower within 3 days in her riding is one of the surest signs that the economic boom has reached her riding and may impress some voters to continue with Locke. Especially convenient for Locke's law and order credentials is the RCMP "E"'s recent decision to relocate its Headquarters to Green Timbers Park from Vancouver by 2009 because crime is a major issue in both Whalley and Green Timbers--even if Locke did not herself influence this move.
The Surrey Leader published this Friday the contents of a recent candidate's debate from the neighbouring riding of Surrey-Whalley where Bruce Ralston, the NDP candidate there openly defended his party's support of Vancouver's "four pillars" approach which included harm reduction or the creation of safe heroin distribution sites. In response the Liberal candidate(Barbara Steele) stated that she would never allow such a strategy to be pursued in Surrey since it would, in effect, 'ghettoize' Whalley. I suspect that many voters in Surrey(including myself) did not know of the NDP's support of the Vancouver approach--which would be considered anathema here where Surrey City Hall has adopted a tough law and order approach to clean up Whalley by aggressively tearing down flop houses, vigorously enforcing bylaws and increasing the police presence. Many voters in North Surrey--whether of blue or white collar extraction--are terrified of returning to the bad old days of the early 1990's when drugs and prostitution were openly visible in Whalley's streets and property crime was rampant. Ralston's open support of the softer Vancouver approach may well deter potential voters in the neighbouring Green Timbers riding(which contains the Commerial core of Whalley including Surrey Place Mall) from voting NDP and could make the difference between a Liberal or an NDP win. As an issue, Crime rates up there with Health Care in this riding and Ralston's views do Hammell no favours. The fact that North Surrey is held federally by Chuck Cadman, a high profile victim of crime himself, confirms that this issue is one of the top overriding concerns of voters here.
07 05 05 SWJ
Party polling has indicated an appreciable lead for Hammell after the leader's debate. This working class riding will be close, but should go for the NDP, barring any major gaff in these last few days.
02 05 05 Patrick Meehan
I think it will go to the NDP, but its going to be a VERY close match.
To deal with a couple of comments made earlier...
Yes, the Greens have nominated someone. His name is Sebastian Sajda, and he is a twenty year old student of Kwantlen. I actually know him personaly, his campaign is exactly 0 dollars in funding and exactly one volunteer outside of his immediate family. He is hoping for 3% of the vote, which would be triple what the greens got in this riding last time as I understand it. It will hardly make a dent in the NDP vote.
As to the 'sign war' that was mentioned, in just a two block area of my house I count 3 signs, all of them NDP. There are a great deal of Liberal signs up, but they are almost exclusively on public property. Realise that my polling area of course is also heavily NDP regardless, and that other polling areas are tougher to crack.
It should make for a very tight race, but as has been said, the riding is lower income blue collar workers like my family. These people tend to vote NDP.
29 04 05 Fabian B
Surrey Green Timbers is traditionally a strong NDP riding but went Liberal in 2001 under Brenda Locke. With the Brenda Locke-Sue Hammell(NDP candidate) rematch this time, I think this riding is currently too close to call. However, there is a strong working class element in this riding which may give Hammell an edge provided the Liberals don't extend their 6-7% lead in the provincial polls. One would have to wait until the last week of the election campaign to see who is ahead. However, if the Liberals and NDP are ina dead heat, then Hammell will surely win.
There has been some significant economic growth in this riding: the once maligned NDP inspired Central City Commercial Tower is now fully leased and 5 High Rise Condo Residential Towers have been approved here by Surrey City Hall in this riding. But these developments may not affect the results of the current election since this riding's tradional blue collar base is quite strong. However, these developments may resonate with voters who associate the economic boom with the Liberals to turn out in support of Locke. But still..this may not be enough to help Locke in her bid to keep this riding given the NDP's strong base.
One thing is certain: Brenda Locke is in a tough tough fight to retain her riding this year against a resurgent NDP. But as an incumbent she has name recognition in her favour as does the former NDP MLA here--Sue Hammell. At present, I think the riding is too close to call, but if this was a traditional election with no Liberal incumbent running, the riding would surely go NDP.
25 04 05 Blake
I drove through this riding over the course of the weekend. While signs on public property are a poor indicator of support, signs on private property tell much more. Brenda Locke has a huge lead in the private-property sign war... this tells me that either Brenda has a definite edge in public support, or that Sue Hammell is really disorganized... either way it doesn't look good for the NDP in this riding.
25 04 05 Interested Voter
Green Party has nominated a candidate this time, which will bring down the NDP vote from 2001.
08 04 05 BLJ
With the NDP attaining their traditional levels of support province-wide, NDP-leaning Surrey-Whalley, Surrey-Green Timbers, and Surrey-Newton will all return back to the fold.
07 04 05 S. Bains
Penny Priddy is not supporting Brenda Locke - if the Locke and her team really believe that Priddy is working for her, well then they deserve to lose the seat!!
06 04 05 BROJ
Saying Brenda is against the mayor is a joke, everyone is against the mayor on the whalley clean up. Brenda wants a look at the social problems the mayor wants to police the problem. With the population growth in the past 4 years don't count on everyone knowing who Sue whats her name is.
05 04 05 Solomon
I think we need to remember that Sue Hammell is a re-tread from that NDP government that sent us down a long dark hole to have not status. Voters have barley come up for air they do not want to go back. No one has forgotten all the lies, even Penny Priddy can't get behind her old party, she has decided to support Brenda Locke who has done a great job representing green timbers and will definatley get another term as the MLA
28 03 05 S. Bains
A couple of things. First, Brenda Locke is not "popular" - she is not "unpopular" either, but she is definitely not "popular". Second, crime is an issue in this riding and Locke is no where to be seen on this file - in fact, she regularly spars with Mayor McCallum and opposes his efforts to clean-up Whalley. Third, transportation is also an issue in this riding and again, Locke has been silent. Fourth, Sue Hammell is likely to have greater name recognition given her 10 years as MLA than Locke is with her 4 years of service. Fifth, organization on the ground will be critical and Locke will not have the horsepower in this area, especially in the Indo-Cdn community which has turned solidly against the BC Liberals. Finally, Locke won this riding by a mere 2,000 votes in the BC Liberal wave of 2001 - there is no wave this time and Locke should start dusting off her resume.
28 03 05 M. Lunn
I think growth can both help or hurt the BC Liberals depending on what type of growth. In the case of Port Moody-Westwood it will help them since it was mostly wealthy homeowners on the Westwood plateau and the same can be said for Vancouver-Burrard, which the NDP may still win, but the high end apartments in Yaletown and Coal Harbour will help the liberals. On the contrary in Surrey, most of the growth has been working class people who can't afford the high housing prices closer to the city and the Indo-Canadian community.
Historically, Surrey went Social Credit, even in the North during the 70s, but shifted the NDP in the northern parts. It also used to go for the Progressive Conservatives, but then went NDP in 1988 and only switched to the Reform Party due to the Reform's populist appeal, not its right wing policies. Nevertheless, Brenda Locke is a strong MLA while Sue Hammel is about the worse candidate the NDP could chose, so it comes down to how people vote: if it is for leader or the party - NDP wins, if it is for MLA - liberals win.
26 03 05 A. Vancouverite
One more thing. Why is it that all the BC Liberal boosters on this site claim growth = automatic Liberal supporters? It's a little presumptious, and tactically stupid, to say the least.
24 03 05
As I said on the Surrey Newton prediciton page, the Liberals tend to poll better in the lower mainland than the NDP for a very good reason. They tend to pile up very large majorities in areas such as South Surrey, (South) Delta, Richmond, SW Vancouver, the North Shore and Langely. The recent poll showed the Liberals ahead by 14 points in the Lower Mainland. This riding was not a swing riding in 1996, the NDP won it by 20 points, and yet the Liberals still easily won the pluarlity of votes in the Lower Mainland. So obviously they'll need to be further ahead than even 7 points.
Second as the previous person so obviously failed to miss the NDP won this seat by 20 points in 1996, it is not a swing seat its a strongly NDP seat. The only comprable strong holds, to the Liberal ones I've outlined, for the NDP, in the lower mainland are in East Vancouver and Northern Surrey. This riding is in Northern Surrey so draw the conclusion.
Third people vote for parties way more than they do individuals, and while the occasional individual can help or hinder in a relativley close riding (ie: 10 points either way) a 20 point victory (in 1996) is too much for the Brenda Locke to overcome. They would need a far better candidate than the allegedly "good" Brenda Locke, good doesn't cut it with numbers like these. Besides who other than a bunch of Liberal or NDP hacks think Brenda Locke, or Sue Hammel, are household names? Jeez people that's the most ridiculous assertion I've heard in a long time. Most people aren't hacks.
21 03 05 interested voter
A.Vancouverite is clearly out of touch with this riding. Latest Ipsos Reid poll has BC libs with a 15% lead in lower mainland. "Sue Who" is definitely disliked -- she barely kept her constituency office open while an elected MLA. Seen as one of the least effective people in Glen Clark's government, she is despised by the NDP cognoscenti - people like Penny Priddy and the Victoria gang - they are definitely not focussed on this riding - instead spending scarce resources in places like Whalley and van Island. Also Reform isn't running candidates this time, except if you're talking about the Dr. BC crazies.
21 03 05 M. Lunn
With the polls now showing the BC liberals with a comfortable lead, I think they have a chance at pulling it off. As long as the NDP has a slim chance at winning the election, they will definitely win this riding since it is a left wing riding, but once it becomes entirely clear the liberals will win, than many who were considering voting NDP will vote for the candidate as opposed to party and since Brenda Locke is popular and Sue Hammell isn't that makes a win possible. If I were Brenda Locke I would hope the STV passes since under that system, I think her chances would be very good as opposed to slim since many would vote for 3 - 6 NDP candidates depending on the number of members in the riding while their 2nd - 7th choice (however many members there are) would be for the person they wanted. Add to the fact most liberals would likely put Brenda Locke as the first choice ahead of the other liberal candidates or at least in the top two choices guaranteeing her victory.
20 03 05 Cornpop
Both parties have shot themselves in the foot in Surrey-Green Timbers. The BC Liberals are not all that popular, but the NDP goes and nominates someone with the taint of Clark to run for them. If the NDP had nominated a fresh face for their party here, their chances in this riding would have improved.
Remember, we booted Hammell out of this riding in 2001 by 13 points, and she was elected in 1996 by an 18 point margin. There are many swing votes availible in Surrey-Green Timbers, and a fresh NDP candidate had the best chance of taking them. But, with Hammell refusing to bow out altogether, I think that the BC Liberals have retained another seat.
20 03 05 David
I will have to agree with BLL that Brenda Locke will take this seat. One important factor that most people from Vancouver missed about Surrey ridings is the enoromous growth in Surrey. Since 1996, there are many new developments (single houses, condos, appartments) in this ridings. Most of these developments are in the Guildford and King George area. These are new voters who are not reflected in 1996 results. Also, one interesting fact during the 96 election result is the BC Liberals were trailing the NDP by 9% at the start of 96 campaign. The latest Ipsos-Reid poll on March 17, 2005 indicates the BC Liberals has a 14% lead over the NDP in the lower mainland. That's more than 20% difference since 96. Another indication traditional NDP ridings are not going back to the NDP.
Another big issue in this riding is Crime (especially Grow Ops). BLL is right about Chuck's get tough on crime stance. In fact, that's why Chuck won this riding as Reform, Alliance, and independent, instead of the NDP. Many people view NDP as too soft on crime. Federal NDP's stance on decriminalize marijuana does not help either.
14 03 05 A. Vancouverite
Please think of reality (you know when people say think of the children...it's a joke). Anyways I think your over-rating Brenda Locke's personal popularity by thinking it can over-come a 20% deficit, I mean seriously is she a house hold name in the riding? Did Sue Hammel eat babies? Is she that much more connected to the “evil NDP” of the “dismal decade” so as to damage her chances with the majority of people who aren’t political junkies? Is Locke that attractive as a candidate one of her major negatives is her unquestioning support of gambling expansion? Lots of people do not like that and considering the demographics of this riding that plank of her platform isn't too popular.
Furthermore the 'split left', as it where, is questionable to say the least I doubt it will hurt the NDP that badly -- the Greens are probably a wash. They could even be drawing more so from the centre-right. The NDP and Liberals are neck and neck in the most recent polling figures, the Greens on the other hand have remained in the same polling position that they received in 2001 -- so whose supporting them this time? Their probably siphoning off centrist voters and moderate right-wingers. Also the BC Conservatives and Reformers split 4% of the vote in the recent Surrey-P-R by-election, and that was with Mary Polak running as the Liberal candidate! Surely they'll do better with the more socially moderate Locke in Green Timbers. When all the math is considered I very much doubt Brenda Locke can gain a whole 20% deficit from 96' with similar polling numbers province wide. Therefore Hammel will win by at least 10 to 15% perhaps duplicating the 96 results.
09 03 05 BLL
Three things in response to M. Lunn:
1) Chuck Cadman's victory had nothing to with a perception that the CPC is too right wing. It had everything to do with Chuck Cadman's own popularity.
In fact, his personal popularity is largely based on his advocacy for victim's rights and a tougher stance on crime, things that fall within the definition "socially conservative"
Surprisingly to some, those issues actually resonate in working class neighbourhoods, and I'm certain that if he wasnt elbowed out of the CPC nomination, he would have won easily regardless, and probably would have also collected the votes that went to Jasbir Cheema in the process.
2) I agree that people most often vote along party lines, but Chuck Cadman is the perfect example of how certain candidates gain popularity that stretches beyond their partisan label. And if voters weigh out Brenda Locke and Sue Hammell individually, Brenda Locke will win hands down.
3) Yes, Brenda Locke did not break the 50% mark in 2001 (48.95% as listed here). But she was one of the few BC Liberals who did not have the benefit of a Green candidate to pull left leaning votes away from the NDP.
As "Interested Voter" pointed out, the vote split was actually on the right. With the BC Liberals effectively holding all of the conservative right this time, that won't be a factor now.
Just one more thing that will work in Brenda Locke's favour.
26 02 05 M. Lunn
Considering that Brenda Locke got less than 50% in 2001 and that the NDP won by a large margin in 1996, I predict it will return to the NDP fold. Even though Brenda Locke's personal popularity and Sue Hammel's lack of popularity will make it more competitive, I still can't see the Liberals pulling this off since most people vote based on party as opposed to individual candidate, especially when we are talking about who might form the next government. The only reason people voted for Chuck Cadman in large numbers in 2004 is he was running as an Independent and most people felt the Conservatives were too extreme, while the Liberals were too corrupt therefore people voted for the local candidate instead of the party. In 2000 since it was clear the liberals were going to win the federal election so it didn't really matter who won that riding, whereas provincially it is not clear who will win the next election
05 03 05 BLL
I believe that of the North Surrey ridings (Whalley, Green Timbers, Newton and Panarama Ridge) Green Timbers will be the most likely to go BC Liberal this time.
I believe that mainly due to the main candidates running. The factor that tipped Panarama Ridge to Jagrup Brar won't be at play here, Brenda Locke has been an exceptionally hardworking MLA and has accomplished a lot for the riding, and her main opponent is a former NDP cabinet minister and Glen Clark loyalist (the perfect opponent for a BC Liberal candidate, given all the reminder politics that plays in to)
24 02 05 M. Lunn
Even though I hope I am wrong, I am predicting that based on previous election results, Sue Hammell will likely win simply because of her party, not because of her. If we used the American system of voting for your local representative separately from leader of the province/state, then Brenda Locke would probably win, but since most people in this riding will be voting based on who they want to be premier as opposed to MLA, Sue Hammell will win albeit by a smaller margin than in 1996.
24 02 05 BLJ
Along with Surrey Whalley and Surrey Newton, this inner Surrey riding will again revert to the NDP based upon their roughly 40% provincial polling levels.
25 02 05 A. Vancouverite
The previous prediction thinking that Brenda Locke will get back in is well un-realistic to say the least. The NDP won this riding in 96' by almost 20%. If the two parties are neck and neck again this is an NDP riding plain and simple, regardless of the Liberal candidate. If Penny Priddy endorsed Brenda Locke that would be quite strange, and I'm sure it would actually be news, because Penny Priddy is still a lefty. Reality is that Penny Priddy, a Surrey City councillor looking out for Surrey's best interests, said that Brenda Locke's promotion to cabinet is a good thing because she's a hard working MLA who knows here job and gets things done for Surrey. There's a difference between that and an endorsement of her candidacy.
Besides how does a Liberal MLA win re-election in a climate where the governing party and opposition are close to each other in the polls, and the Liberal MLA only won by 12% when the Liberals won the general election by 35%? It doesn't make any sense.
22-Feb-05 Interested Voter
Apparently screams of joy were heard at Liberal Party headquarters when it was announced that Hammell (known affectionately in Surrey as "Sue Who") would be running again. Locke has been an active 'Surrey Defender', and has attracted the support of former BC Reform leader Chris Delaney as well as former NDP Cabinet Minister Penny Priddy. The latter speaks volumes when a former Cabinet seatmate can't bring herself to supporting Hammell. Prediction: without 7% Reform vote this time around, Locke will increase her plurality.

Submit Information here
Return to - regional Index
Return to - 2005 British Columbia Prediction

© 1999-2005 Election Prediction Project/Projet D'Élection Prévision - www.electionprediction.com