Election time draws near, again 

There may have been an unwritten agreement to ease off on election campaigning before Christmas but as of the New Year that agreement is null and void.

The 11 candidates aiming for the sixth and final seat on council will have just over one week to get their message out there before voters go to the polls once again on Saturday, Jan. 11.

Candidate Chris Quinlan said that on Jan. 2, "Expect to see the signs."

He said it’s going to be guerrilla-type campaigning from Jan. 2 to 10 as candidates try to reach as many people as possible in a short time.

In the meantime their campaigning is fairly low-key.

"I just think the electorate are pretty tired," Quinlan said just prior to Christmas.

"People are frazzled and don’t really care right now."

Compared to the weeks leading up to the November election, the run up to this election pales in comparison. November was remembered as a tense time. Election signs littered the roadways. Flyers swirled around town. And the words "dirty politics" reared their ugly head more than once.

"I don’t think it should be a political Christmas," said candidate Rick André, owner of Esquires coffee shop.

Candidate Mitch Rhodes agrees, which prompted him to make the conscious decision to not run any advertising in the local papers or put up signs along the highway, as other candidates have done.

"I don’t think it’s proper to expose our guests to our internal election dilemmas," he said.

Whistler voters are going back to the polls again because of a fluke tie for the sixth seat on council.

Despite three recounts, which gave different tallies each time, a provincial court judge ruled on one ballot, which tied the number of votes for both Dave Kirk and Marianne Wade.

A runoff election within 50 day’s of the judge’s ruling was the only way to break the tie.

That’s why the election campaign fell over the Christmas holidays – Whistler’s busiest season.

"People are focused on doing a good job over our busy season," said Rhodes.

A few of the candidates are hitting the busiest 10 days of their whole year, as guests from around the world flock to the resort for their Christmas vacations.

"My priority right now is my business over Christmas," said Dave Kirk, who owns a handful of sports stores in the village.

"I’m completely convinced that people don’t want to deal with the campaign (at this time)."

At the same time, Kirk can address any concerns while working at the store.

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