LANGFORD, B.C. — Two British Columbia political leaders at the centre of negotiations to set the direction for the province's immediate political future sat together Sunday at an international rugby match at Westhills Stadium near Victoria.
John Horgan, leader of the New Democratic Party, and Andrew Weaver, Green party leader, said politics was far from the agenda as they cheered on Canada's rugby squad in a final game against New Zealand.
Canada's women's rugby sevens team ended up losing to New Zealand in the finals of the HSBC World Rugby Women's Sevens Series event at Langford, just west of Victoria.
"I'm a rugby guy," said Weaver. "I'm hanging out with my rugby guys here."
Weaver said he saw Horgan in the crowd and the two decided to sit together.
Both Horgan and Weaver have played rugby in the past and are fans of the sport.
Political observers and the New Democrats have already said there appears to be more in common between the Greens and the NDP than the Greens and the Liberals, who are led by Christy Clark.
The two leaders said they were cheering on Canada and not talking politics. Though Weaver said he was meeting with the Liberal party later in the evening.
Weaver said Friday he was very close to making a deal with either the Liberals or the New Democrats on forming a new minority government in B.C.
He said negotiations between the parties had intensified since Elections BC confirmed the province’s election results last week with the Liberals holding 43 seats in the legislature to the NDP’s 41 and the Greens’ three.
Weaver said the parties have looked at a range of examples of minority governments in Canada and overseas to determine how to proceed, and he isn’t interested in a coalition government because that would undermine the Greens’ ability to defend their platform.
Reforming the voting system to implement proportional representation remains one of the key issues for the Greens, he said.
Weaver suggested Sunday he might be prepared to announce a deal with either the NDP or Liberals on Tuesday.
"Go Canada go, that's my comment," said Horgan.
The Canadian Press