WATCH: Tory: I'm the only candidate to take Toronto forward

Used campaign launch to attack Chow, Ford

John Tory says he may not be the front-runner in the race for mayor of Toronto, but he's the only the candidate to take the city "not left, not right, but forward".

Tory made the proclamation Wednesday night at an event billed as his campaign kick-off. The former Newstalk 1010 host announced he was running February 23rd.

Speaking to a crowd of about 400 from a podium emblazoned with the word "TOgether", Tory took the chance to hit against his two main rivals.

Tory lashed out at Olivia Chow, who he identified as "the NDP candidate", for her stance on transit.

"She says she might get around to building the Yonge Street relief line eventually", said Tory. "I gotta tell ya folks, eventually doesn't cut it in the real world when you've waited for three trains every day, when you're late for work, when you're late for a job interview and you're late for picking up the kids".

Tory has flagged the relief line as priority if he becomes mayor, part of his plan to make Toronto more livable, affordable and functional. Tory isn't prepared to reveal how he intends to pay for the project with a projected price tag of $7-billion.

"In the weeks and months ahead I will have a full financial plan that will lay out how we're gonna pay for everything and it'll be put in front of the voters in due course and in plenty of time for them to assess it", Tory told reporters after his speech.

Tory also vowed to move ahead with construction of the approved and funded Scarborough subway extension. Chow favours a cheaper, LRT line with more stops and a shorter construction timeline.

Tory believes Chow is counting on disappointment with Rob Ford's four years as mayor for "a big pendulum swing that takes the city back to its free-spending ways".

While Tory says Ford has exhausted the good will he was voted in on, the idea behind his 20-10 landslide win is still a good one.

"City hall should answer to you, every day, and for every dollar of your money."

Tory is unconvinced by suggestions, including from the city manager, that on the heels of Ford's campaign to "stop the gravy train" there's no more waste to be found at City Hall. The former executive pointed to potential consolidation at Build Toronto, Toronto Community Housing Corporation, Toronto Parking Authority and the TTC's real estate department as money-saving options.

Tory managed a dig at Ford while admitting his own political career hasn't been all smooth sailing.

"I've experience defeat, I've been knocked down, and I've gotten back up. And I'm not perfect, but unlike some others, I will never be content with that fact."

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  1. Only Common Sense posted on 03/20/2014 06:54 AM
    The most competent person in the race, John Tory is also the person with the best contacts in both senior levels of government as well as in the business community.

    This is your chance, Toronto, to do the smart thing and elect him on October 27th.
    1. Mark7 posted on 03/20/2014 07:42 AM
      @Only Common Sense Tory i not only a bad choice but probably the worst candidate for Toronto. Clearly, only Rob Ford has the track record to lead the city into the next four years. He'll build us subways, get rid of the land transfer tax, and create a family dynasty that will rule for generations.

      FORD MORE YEARS FORD MORE YEARS FORD MORE YEARS...and hopefully many more. He may drive a Caddy, but I'll drive a Ford anyday.
    2. Only Common Sense posted on 03/20/2014 07:52 AM
      @Mark7 Ford's so-called track record went off the rails a long time ago ... but you can stay in dreamland if you want. Your mayor-in-name-only will do no better than a poor third place showing.
    3. Angry Bill posted on 03/20/2014 09:51 AM
      @Only Common Sense I agree with your assessment here, Only Common Sense. John Tory is the only sane choice, and the only viable chance Toronto has to help get itself out of the hole it's in. Chow would hire unionized workers to dig a deeper hole for Toronto, and Ford, while he addresses people's concern about their pockets being picked, I believe is incapable of delivering what people need at the end of the day. His personal issues aside.
    4. BigDaddy posted on 03/20/2014 10:59 AM
      @Mark7 Thanks, Doug!
  2. Scrappy posted on 03/20/2014 08:21 AM
    Tory is just using the platform already used by Ford. Nothing original as usual.
    1. Angry Bill posted on 03/20/2014 09:53 AM
      @Scrappy Then you know nothing about Tory at all, and from your statement, it appears you're happy to keep it that way.
  3. AdrianoC1981 posted on 03/20/2014 08:56 AM
    Why would anybody want to vote for a wannabe conservative who flip flops his policies from right leaning to left leaning on a daily basis. Mr. Tory is more like Olivia Chow then he claims to be. Mayor Rob Ford is the only true conservative candidate that I would be willing to trust with my money. Tory is a "yes sir" candidate that will buckle under the pressure of all the left leaning idiots on council. No backbone Tory=vote for Rob Ford true fiscal conservative. Don't get sucked in by the media propaganda surrounding Mayor Ford. Project Brazen 2 will end up the same way as Project Brazen 1 with no charges being laid against the Mayor.
    1. Angry Bill posted on 03/20/2014 09:57 AM
      @AdrianoC1981 No backbone, eh? Flip-flops, eh? You have a very short memory. If he was unwilling to stick to his guns, don't you think he would have flip-flopped on the private school issue that cost him the premiership? No, he stuck to his guns, and what he believed. Sounds like backbone to me. Compare to Hudak, who backed down on his stance on right-to-work.

      Whatever else you want to accuse Tory of, and he'll be the first to admit he's not perfect, if you say he's wishy washy and incapable of original ideas, then you know nothing about him.
    2. AdrianoC1981 posted on 03/20/2014 10:47 AM
      @Angry Bill Tory has no backbone. If he did, he would've entered his name on the ballot sheet the first possible day as did Mayor Rob Ford. Instead, he decided to wait until the morons on his campaign team decided to for him thinking that he a chance to win. On the other hand Olivia Chow, when she decided to run she instead sent one of her guppies to officially sign her up( just forshadowing the fact that Olivia depends on the little guy to do her dirty work). However, Mayor Rob Ford amidst all the media scrutiny and attempts to tarnish his name, stepped up and put his own image on the line to give the citizens of Toronto the opportunity to vote for a real fiscal conservative. Rob Ford is the only candidate with a backbone ready to fight for the average tax payer or Toronto. You definitely have my vote Mayor Ford.
    3. Angry Bill posted on 03/20/2014 05:20 PM
      @AdrianoC1981 Ok, I get where you're coming from. But because Tory isn't the type to grandstand like Ford does, that means he has no backbone? If you want a grandstanding mayor, then by all means vote for Ford. If you want a savvy business man who actually knows how to handle budgets and finances of a huge corporation, then go with Tory.

      Signing up on the first day at 8:30 in the morning when the office first opens is just grandstanding, and means nothing. Well, to me. To you, apparently it means something. But that's ok, like I said you can vote for Ford.
    4. AdrianeT posted on 03/24/2014 12:26 PM
      @AdrianoC1981 Tory has had many chances to lead..his style (comes across as an out of touch aristocrat) does not resonate with average voters...I hear he is cozying up to Wynne (who of late is using gender bias as an excuse for incompetence)...just think of it folks..Wynne running Ontario, one of her bench men running Toronto and Puppatello running Hydro One...that roaring sound you hear is the last remnants of your paycheck being flushed down the toilet.
  4. don was right posted on 03/20/2014 09:46 AM
    Sadly, Sandra from Toronto was right.3 time loser, working on four. Tory the guy who wants to build condos at Ontario place. and then spend billions to run transit over to there. Tory, Mitzi Hunter's best friend until she stabbed him in the back on subways to win an eection Tory with the $6billion congestion ciost and not one clue as to how to really solve it. Oh well. It will make the RoFo landslide just bigger.
    1. Angry Bill posted on 03/20/2014 09:59 AM
      @don was right Tory wasn't the 3 time loser. The people who didn't vote for him are. And the sad fact, because they're unhappy with their current government, they blame Tory for the fact that they didn't vote for him, and actually have an honest politician with scruples running things.

      John doesn't need the money, fame or recognition. We need him more than he needs us. Don't ascribe the self-serving attributes to him that the other candidates have. Again, if you do that, you show that you know Tory not at all, and aren't interesting in doing so.
    2. Frankie posted on 03/20/2014 10:29 AM
      @don was right Angry Bill is right. Tory was being honest in previous elections and was vilified for it, while others lied in order to con the voters, and won.

      Mike Harris was the last major politician to be honest and get voted in. He did what he said he'd do so there were no surprises.

      Unfortunately too many of today's voters prefer the smoke and mirrors and lies.

      Too bad
    3. dama posted on 03/20/2014 04:22 PM
      @Frankie All good argument.. all candidates have their own faults, strenght and weakness and baggages..

      In politic, ,no one is REALLY honest.. John Tory went against his advisers regarding faith base funding..and he lost.. when he was leading in poll.. I be he kicked his arse after he lost.. why is Hudak changing his tune regarding Right To Work? he wants to win the next election.

      Mike Harris is a good example on his campaign promise so is Rob Ford until his shenanigans but Rob Ford was honest to a degree with his gravy train promise.. he did almost all except the LTT

      With John Tory, he is 3rd in current poll, and one does not need to really know a candidate to cast their vote.. most voters will just go by the person they either like for any winner will not be able to carry out their platform/policy...

      Interesting election .. I must say..

      Rob Ford again ??? I cant rule him out..

  5. Sonny posted on 03/20/2014 10:23 AM
    Last month I was at McDonald's talking to a 1%er. Ford was on the News and he defended him. I ask what if Tory ran? The guy would vote for Tory in a heartbeat.
    John Tory is another Conservative option. Even Jerry Agar was at the launch!
  6. Patrick posted on 03/20/2014 04:51 PM
    One of the biggest qualifications for John Tory to be mayor is that he's ABC: Anyone But Chow!
    1. Lucy posted on 03/20/2014 04:59 PM
      @Patrick ABC, easy as 123, simple as do-re-mi...!
  7. Gary2012 posted on 03/20/2014 05:23 PM
    I am most inclined to vote for John Tory - no question. Rob Ford doesn't do anything but rant, walks the park with security enjoying the media attention while we pay for that half day of supposed work. He has no idea where to take Toronto as he can barely keep himself standing up (pardon the pun). Olivia Chow simply lacks so many things. John Tory has a whole profile of engaging with people and business. He's the one candidate I can see negotiating with leaders both local and international on how to bring business to Toronto. I can see him talking with Industry leaders on how to better or province. If you ask Rob Ford to do that, you'd probably need more than 2 drinks and an entire security team. Rob Ford has made a circus. If he becomes an elect, I see no change no value. It's business as usual for him...he'll drink when he wants - he'll cuss if he wants - even in front of children. We have had a lot of politicians who has been successful - very successful - in maintaining a private life. Their integrity and behavior is one that commands respect on or outside office. Can't say the same on Ford. If he wins and things go south - how can we even be surprised about it.
    1. Laura posted on 03/20/2014 05:39 PM
      @Gary2012 "Olivia Chow simply lacks so many things."

      Namely, a connection to reality. ABC! ANYONE BUT CHOW!
    2. dama posted on 03/21/2014 02:54 PM
      @Gary2012 Good points but you have to understand how city hall function,, all mayors would like to have more or new business in their city but there is a CHAIR that wil lead the charge in the current council, it is Michael Thompson, he is the chair of Business/ Economic Development.. he travelled with Rob Ford to Texas to STUDY their music festival Economic . in attracting future music festival for Toronto.. so Rob Ford did his part but ultimately it is Mivhael Thompson to follow through..

      John Tory, yes, a good speaker.. CEO material, dealt with the elitist, provincial and federally.. .. but he has yet to prove himself . politically..
      he lost against Dalton, lost against Miller and even lost in the Haliburton bye-election to an unknown Liberal candidate.. so I dont know if he is capable in negotiating new business or work with cuncillor.. remember the mayor only has ONE vote..

      then again.. anything is better than O Chow.. .
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