Campaign for Ontario's June 7 election officially begins

Clay Curtis
May 11, 2018

The Ontario Liberals, under party leader Kathleen Wynne have pledged billions of dollars for health care and support for seniors and also promised free child care for preschoolers beginning in 2020.

The poll was conducted immediately after the conclusion of CityTV's broadcast of the first provincial leaders' debate and surveyed 2000 Torontonians. The campaign for the June 7 election will officially start Wednesday.

As for Wynne, Esselment expects all of the knock-out-punches will be delivered by the premier. Ms. Wynne and Ms. Horwath warned that thousands of teachers and nurses would be fired.

The debate will also begin to draw increased scrutiny to the campaign, which has unofficially been underway for weeks, de Clery said. Both questioned the PC leader on specifics of where the cuts were going to come from in order to find $6-billion in efficiencies.

The third time may well prove to be a charm for Andrea Horwath, who both pundits and polls suggest has the most to gain in Ontario's spring election.

Ford said his government would keep kids safe and have zero tolerance for impaired driving from pot.

"Doug Ford walked into last night's debate as the front-runner and clearly Torontonians think that his debate performance matched his support in this polls", said Quito Maggi, President and CEO of Mainstreet Research.

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While Mr. Ford and Ms. Wynne clashed repeatedly, Ms. Horwath stood back and told the audience: "You don't have to choose between bad and worse".

The Ontario sex-ed curriculum - generally loathed by social conservatives activists in the province although popular with many parents according to polling - will be scrapped because it's "too much, too soon", Ford said. He did say that he would get rid of the chief executive of the electrical transmission company Hydro One, which was partly privatized by Ms. Wynne's government. "I believe, I strongly believe, that we should have rehabilitation programs". It would have been better if Ford had pointed out that the other parties' plans to provide services with borrowed money are unsustainable and unrealistic. She is the longest-serving provincial party leader in Ontario.

Graefe said the combination of years of work and the recent shifts in Ontario's political cast of characters leaves Horwath in a uniquely positive position as the campaign gets underway.

"It's always a bit easier when you're in the opposition to have this kind of support, but.it's very consistent", Tellier said.

If voters came away from this debate thinking, "I could vote for her", then it's mission accomplished for Horwath. "No, you don't understand". Before narrowly winning the PC leadership race in March, Ford's only political experience was as a Toronto city councillor from 2010 to 2014.

With the writ dropping after midnight, the Progressive Conservative leader chose to make Renfrew-Nipissing-Pembroke one of his first stops as he embarks on a province-wide endeavour to convince voters over the next 30 days to return his party to government after 15 years in the political wilderness. The comfortable income and secure benefits they enjoyed provided stability for her and her three siblings, Horwath said.

Surprisingly, Wynne spent time defending her government's economic record, which is not what this election is about.

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