Anderson was a shop steward with the United Steelworkers and a technician for Telus when he was first elected as MLA for Leduc-Beaumont in the 2015 Orange Wave. He served as Minister of Municipal Affairs from 2017 until his defeat in the 2019 election to United Conservative Party candidate Brad Rutherford.
Anderson announced last year that he and his family had moved back to his hometown of Duncan on Vancouver Island.
In an interview with Alberta View Magazine in 2018, Anderson recalled how growing up in the Cowichan Valley shaped his politics:
So where I grew up, the Cowichan Valley, is a big resource area. My dad’s in forestry, as are a lot of people I know. And when I was born, in 1975, Tommy Douglas was our MP for one term—which I didn’t know until I got elected. So it makes sense why we were usually NDP. We were labour and blue collar, right? That said, my parents always told me, “Get informed. It doesn’t matter who you vote for but make sure you understand why.”
If successful in his nomination bid, Anderson would face Green Party MP Paul Manly when the next federal election is called. Manly was first elected in a May 2019 by-election and is the son of former NDP MP James Manly.
Anderson continues the long-tradition of Alberta politicians jumping into electoral politics in British Columbia.
- Former Calgary-Bow Progressive Conservative MLA Alana DeLong was the BC Liberal candidate in Nanaimo-North Cowichan in the 2017 provincial election and the Conservative candidate in Cowichan-Malahat-Langford in the 2019 federal election.
- Former cabinet minister and Red Deer-North PC MLA Stockwell Day ran in Okanagan-Coquihalla after becoming leader of the Canadian Alliance and served as MP until 2011.
- One-time St. Albert NDP candidate Michelle Mungall served as the NDP MLA for Nelson-Creston from 2009 to 2020 and in various cabinet roles during this period.
- Michael Charrois, who ran for the NDP in Edmonton-Castle Downs in the 2001 election, was the federal NDP candidate in North Vancouver in 2008 and 2011 and the BC NDP candidate in North Vancouver-Seymour in 2017.
- Former Edmonton-Belmont NDP MLA Tom Sigurdson ran for the BC NDP nomination in Burnaby-Willingdon ahead of the 2005 provincial election.
- Former Edmonton-Glengarry PC MLA Rollie Cook currently serves as an elected member of the Salt Spring Island Fire Protection District.
- Former Slave Lake mayor Val Meredith served as the Reform Party MP for South Surrey—White Rock—Langley and Surrey—White Rock—South Langley from 1993 to 2004. Meredith has since moved to Calgary and is now leading the candidate selection committee for the separatist Maverick Party.
- Former Edmonton mayor Vincent Dantzer served as the PC MP for Okanagan North from 1980 to 1988.
- Macleod MP Ernest Hansell was Alberta Premier Ernest Manning‘s handpicked choice to lead the Social Credit Party into British Columbia’s 1952 election. When the Socreds unexpectedly won the election, Hansell remained an Alberta MP and W.A.C. Bennett was chosen to become Premier.