Ontario Election Update: 7 weeks until the vote

Apr 13 2018, 2:48 pm

As the Ontario Election Day looms closer (Thursday, June 7), the tension is mounting between the three main contenders.

Before you read any further, if you’re in the dark about the Ontario election, you can find all you need to know here, as well as a 101 on the Liberal Party, Progressive Conservative Party (PC), and the New Democratic Party (NDP).

Most recently, a leaders’ debate organized by the black community was held last Wednesday night (April 11) and attended by Premier Kathleen Wynne, NDP leader Andrea Horwath, and Green Party leader Mike Schreiner. Noticeably absent was Conservative Doug Ford, who was unable to attend as he wrapped up his tour of northern Ontario.

In terms of likely outcomes at this stage in the race, practically every recent poll shows the Conservatives winning a majority.

Here are the latest updates on the candidates.

Doug Ford

PC party candidate Doug Ford just wrapped his three-day, campaign-style northern Ontario tour on Wednesday night, during which he reiterated his main campaign promises (and, inevitably, took the opportunity to knock Wynne whenever he could).

During Ford’s tour, he stuck to his main points that he intended to defeat Kathleen Wynne and cut taxes. He also stressed he would decrease hospital wait times and focus more resources on education for the trades.

Making headlines last week, Ford vowed to fire the CEO and the entire board of Hydro One if he is elected due to skyrocketing hydro prices in Ontario.

Ford’s absence at Wednesday’s debate was controversial and highlighted with the placement of an empty chair.

Ford also took to Twitter to accept Wynne’s challenge for three live debates.

On Sunday, April 15, Ford unveiled his new campaign bus and slogan.

Kathleen Wynne

  • Liberal leader Kathleen Wynne didn’t exactly get an easy ride Wednesday night’s debate, as she tried addressed the practice of carding, stating that finding a “balance” to the process was needed. This was met with boos and heckles from the crowd.

    Although historically there has only been just one televised debate in the Ontario elections, Wynne made headlines last week when she challenged her main opponent, Doug Ford, to three more leaders’ debates before June, to which Ford took to Twitter to accept the challenge.

    Wynne also called for the Green Party to be allowed at the debate.

    The premier stated last week that she was looking into a decision to place a new province-run cannabis store within a kilometre if an elementary school. School officials claim they were excluded from the decision-making process.

    In other Liberal party news, offering ample ammunition for the opposition, former top Liberal staffer David Livingston is heading to jail for four months for deleting emails concerning a controversial gas plant cancellation.

Andrea Horwath

  • New Democratic Party leader Andrea Horwath took to Twitter to say she was happy to participate in the three debates proposed by Wynne, “bring ’em on,” she Tweeted.

    At Wednesday night’s Black community debate, Horwath’s announcement that she would end the practice of carding was met with applause from the near 300 guests in attendance.

    Horwath published an article in the Toronto Sun, where she stressed the need for change in Toronto, addressing everything from congestion (saying she would restore $330 million in operating funds to improve TTC service) and housing costs (stressing she has “committed Mayor John Tory to restore provincial support for crucial social housing repairs”) among other things.

    On April 11, Horwath re-introduced legislation today that would ensure long-term care residents receive a minimum of 4 hrs care daily.

    Meanwhile, the NDP party has experienced three human rights complaints in MPP offices in Hamilton, of which Horwath (who has been accused of bullying herself) said this week that she’s waiting for the outcome of the complaints.

    Horwath said she would unveil her party’s full platform today at 1 pm.