Coun. Karen Stintz and radio show host John Tory have officially entered Toronto’s mayoral race.
Tory filed his nomination papers with the city clerk on Monday morning, joining incumbent Mayor Rob Ford and former city councillor David Soknacki on the campaign trail.
“Right now, we’re at a time when we need to get the city working together, to get city council working together, to have one city, to make it liveable, to make it affordable, and to make it functional. I had said that I would think about this and make a decision in February, and here we are,” Tory told reporters when he filed his papers.
When it comes to potential negative campaigning he will face against Mayor Ford and his campaign manager, Coun. Doug Ford, Tory said he will talk about his positive ideas and how others chose to run their campaigns is up to them.
Stintz signed her papers earlier in the morning, which was carried live on Breakfast Television, and then headed to city hall to drop them off around 10 a.m.
Federal NDP MP Olivia Chow, who is widely rumoured to run for mayor, has not yet joined the race.
The election will be held on Oct. 27, 2014.
Stintz told Breakfast Television that congestion — not just transit — would be a large part of her platform.
“Job No. 1 is to deal with congestion and it’s more than just transit — it’s about cars, bikes, deliveries, taxis – we want people to get home quicker,” she said.
Stintz touched on her record as councillor — she has represented Ward 16, Eglinton-Lawrence, for 10 years — and her time as TTC chair. She also took a veiled shot at Ford, saying Toronto residents want a leader who is “responsible.”
“They want a leader who is responsible and accountable and focusing on their priorities,” she said.
It’s Tory’s second time running for mayor. He lost to David Miller in 2003. As leader of the provincial Progressive Conservatives he failed to win his own seat in the 2007 election. Then when another member of the legislature gave up her seat so Tory could run in a byelection he lost again and resigned as leader.
Tory is also the former president and CEO of Rogers Media.
He told Breakfast Television on Monday his platform consists of keeping taxes low and ending gridlock in the political chambers and on the roads.
“Getting transit built and attacking traffic congestion … that starts with building that Yonge Street relief line,” he said.
“I’m about … keeping taxes low, especially property taxes.”
Tory added that many transit problems are “regional” in nature and working with all levels of government will be necessary.
Rob Ford’s re-election bid faces challenge
Despite admitting to smoking crack cocaine while in office, Ford is running for re-election. He says he’s confident he can win and has dismissed criticism of his drug use, alcohol binges and surreptitiously videotaped profane rants as mere personal attacks.
Not long after Tory and former TTC chairwoman Karen Stintz registered to run for mayor, Ford called in to a Toronto radio station to tout his record.
The Newstalk1010 host Jerry Agar asked Ford if he could guarantee no more “embarrassing videos” would emerge during the remainder of the campaign and four more years as mayor if he is re-elected.
“Talk is cheap,” Ford said. “Actions speak louder than words.”
Agar noted that the mayor has said that previously, then a video surfaced in January showing Ford rambling in a Jamaican accent and using profanity. Ford admitted he had been drinking, despite vows he had given up alcohol.
“You may be perfect, maybe the rest of society is perfect, all I know is that my record speaks for itself,” Ford countered in the radio interview. “I’m a real person…I’m straight up.”
Rogers Media is the parent company of City, CityNews and this website.
With files from Momin Qureshi, 680News