Maybe you’ve skimmed them over; perhaps you’ve educated yourself on the parties and their platforms. Or maybe you actually know so little about our provincial politics that it’s getting embarrassing when the topic comes up at brunch or the dinner table.
But we’re here to help so you no longer have to fake it ’till one of them makes it.
Here’s everything you need to know about the 2018 Ontario Election.
The 42nd Ontario general election will go down on Thursday, June 7, 2018, with more than 7,300 voting locations throughout the province.
The main parties vying for control of Ontario are the Liberal Party (who has been the leader of Ontario for the past 15 years), the Progressive Conservatives (PC), and the New Democratic Party (NDP). The current premiere of Ontario, Kathleen Wynne will run for the Liberals; Doug Ford for the PC; and Andrea Horwath for the NDP.
Wynne, of course, is the current leader of Ontario’s Liberal Party, and the highly controversial Premier of Ontario. She has led the party since 2013 and is the Member of the Ontario Provincial Parliament representing the riding of Don Valley West. First elected to public office as a Toronto District School Board Trustee in 2000, and elected to the Provincial Legislature in 2003, Wynne served in various cabinet posts before leading her party to a majority government victory in the 2014 election.
Etobicoke-based businessman Doug Ford – older brother of the late (and highly controversial) Rob Ford – is the newly elected leader of the PC party. Ford was a Toronto City Councillor for Ward 2 Etobicoke North from 2010 to 2014, during the time that his brother was mayor. As you may recall, this Ford brother also ran for mayor in 2014, placing second after John Tory.
The first woman to lead the NDP Party, Andrea Horwath (pronounced Andrea Horvath), has lead the NDP since 2009 and been in politics for over 20 years. She is a member of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario (she was elected in 2004), representing the riding of Hamilton Centre.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you probably know that the year wasn’t exactly off to a stellar start for the PC Party, after the resignation of former leader Patrick Brown in the wake of sexual assault allegations and the subsequent scramble to find a new party leader.
Back in February, Andrea Horwath publicly called the Torys, a “train wreck” in the wake of allegations against Brown, saying that the NDP is the only alternative to the Liberals. More recently, Horwath dismissed the recently-tabled, spendthrift Liberal budget as a hasty, last-minute attempt at re-election.
Horwath isn’t without her own controversies either, and has been faced with allegations of workplace harassment, bullying, and high employee turnover, as reported in The Hamilton Spectator.
Meanwhile, Kathleen Wynne has said that Doug Ford “would take a bulldozer” to Ontario.
Of course, Wynne is now facing a slew of attacks after tabling a budget late last month that has been widely criticized for being a “spending spree.” Ford has even taken to writing opinion pieces in the Toronto Sun, slamming Wynne and her budget.
Doug Ford remains almost as controversial as his brother. A recent Macleans article claimed he had been filmed handing out $20 bills to constituents and has said that a treatment home for kids with autism “ruined” the neighbourhood he lived in. Furthermore, a Globe and Mail article said that Ford was once a “go-to dealer of hash.”
In response to Wynne’s budget, the polls have revealed that the focus on social policy has worked.
According to a new poll from Forum Research taken after the release of the budget, the Liberal party has closed some of the lead held by the Tories, though the PCs are still favoured to win.
At the time of writing, the Liberals now have 29%, compared to the 36% held by the Tories and 26% for the NDP.
According to Forum projections, if an election were held tomorrow, Doug Ford wouldn’t be able to win enough seats for a majority. The PCs projected minority government would hold 57 seats, the Liberals would have 36 seats, and the NDP would fall third with 31 seats.