Victoria mayoral candidate drops out of race as others join

There's one less candidate vying for the mayor's chair in Victoria.

After four months of campaigning, Gary Beyer has announced he's officially pulling out the race. The Tesseract Computers co-owner believes there are too many people running for mayor and he fears that will lead to vote splitting, which in turn could allow incumbent Lisa Helps to win.

Beyer made the announcement live on CFAX1070 Thursday morning, "we are now to the point where we have the possibility of splintering the vote… to where [Helps] could possibly win with less than 35% of the vote. That's kind of frightening."

"There have been a lot of sleepless nights. It's been a tough decision," said Beyer.

That decision came on the same week that Vancouver Island University sociology professor Bruce McGuigan emerged as another mayoral candidate. The Fernwood resident previously spent 10 years as a senior policy advisor in both provincial and federal governments. He says he’s a problem solver who wants to bring better decision making to Victoria.

Beyer says he had discussions with the three candidates he considers the frontrunners. They are McGuigan, businessman and activist Stephen Hammond, and Consultant/ lobbyist Michael Geoghegan. Beyer says he was left worried that egos were getting in the way of possible political change.

Several other candidates have announced their intentions to run against Lisa Helps for mayor of Victoria: Child poverty activist Rob Duncan, Principal owner of Canada’s Reno Rebate Sean Leitenberg, Saanich Deli owner Krzysztof “Chris” Zmuda, and Ryan Moen – who promises an art based approach to politics.  

As of this time, McGuigan was the only candidate to officially file his papers with Elections BC.

Victorians go to the polls on October 20th.

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