After coming up short on his bid to become an MLA in the 2013 provincial election, Fairmont Hot Springs resident Doug Clovechok is taking aim once more at becoming the elected member of the legislative assembly for the Columbia River-Revelstoke riding in 2017.
Mr. Clovechok previously ran for office as the ridings Liberal candidate in 2013 but came up 1,616 votes short of usurping incumbent NDP Norm Macdonalds seat in Victoria, earning 36.19 per cent of the vote.
He said from the moment he knew he was mathematically eliminated in 2013, hes been preparing for the next election.
The winning part of not winning is that I knew what we needed to do differently, Mr. Clovechok told The Pioneer. I think Ive been able to demonstrate to the constituents in my work with the last three years that Im able to accomplish things working with government MLAs and working with ministers that weve been successful.
After losing the election, Mr. Clovechok joined the Liberal Party executive board where he said he learned more about how the political process works. He said that one of the things an MLA has to demonstrate once in office is accountability while producing measurable results.
They need to be able to put some rubber on the road so to speak and frankly, in the last 12 years, I havent seen a lot of tire tracks in Columbia River-Revelstoke, he said.
In looking back on his past performance as the Liberal candidate, he said he understands that at times he was too combative in his approach with local issues. He said he hopes to change that this time around.
I think people can work together, Mr. Clovechok said. Im not afraid to drop the gloves if theres an issue that needs the gloves to be dropped, but I think what Ive learned since working with constituents and listening to them is that theres more to be gained from a collaborative approach than a combative approach.
With Mr. Macdonald stepping away from politics once the 2017 election is over, the riding will see a new face as its MLA for the first time since 2005.
While Mr. Clovechok commends Mr. Macdonald for devoting his career to public service, he said not facing an incumbent is certainly a better scenario for him getting into office next year.