By Friday evening, neither Roy McTaggart’s Progressives-led alliance nor Wayne Panton’s coalition of independents had a clear majority of 10 MP-elects necessary to form a new government.
Both sides appeared to have nine members apiece, with the allegiance of McKeeva Bush still unclear, as negotiations on either side continued for a third straight day.
Alric Lindsay, who has been named as Speaker under Panton’s coalition, was unsuccessful in his race for the George Town South seat, which was won by Barbara Conolly. The Speaker does not have to be an elected member.
Here is the state of play as we understand it on Friday evening:
|Progressives-led alliance||Panton-led coalition of independents|
|Roy McTaggart||Wayne Panton|
|Alden McLaughlin||Christopher Saunders|
|Joey Hew||McKeeva Bush||Heather Bodden|
|Moses Kirkconnell||Sabrina Turner|
|Juliana O’Connor-Connolly||Kenneth Bryan|
|Barbara Conolly||Katherine Ebanks-Wilks|
|David Wight||Bernie Bush|
|Isaac Rankine*||Jay Ebanks***|
*Isaac Rankine was named in Panton’s original list of 10 MP-elects, which he presented to the governor on 15 April. Later that evening, Rankine’s name and signature would appear on a list provided by the Progressives, counting Rankine among their allied independents. Rankine appears to still count among the Progressives-led team’s numbers, although Kenneth Bryan appealed to him to return to the fold during Friday’s Prospect community meeting.
**André Ebanks was also included in Panton’s initial group. However, he did not appear to have been present during Friday’s talks, nor did he attend the Prospect meeting on Friday evening. There is no suggestion, however, that he has joined the Progressives’ side.
***Jay Ebanks’s name was included in the original Panton list, although he was later named among the Progressives’ coalition, but there was no signature provided in the designated box. On Friday, Ebanks was seen departing the Panton talks in George Town, in the company of McKeeva Bush. He did not appear at the Prospect meeting, but there has been no information to suggest he has joined the Progressives-led faction, either.
The status of McKeeva Bush remains unclear at this stage. He did not comment when he departed Friday afternoon’s talks with Panton, and Panton also declined to comment.