WATCH ABOVE: Olivia Chow is taking aim at John Tory’s record on the campaign trail. Jackson Proskow reports.
TORONTO – Olivia Chow came out swinging against rival candidate John Tory, whom she portrayed as a “flip-flopper.”
Chow, who was speaking to the Canadian Club Tuesday, criticized Tory’s judgement and leadership skills, even going as far to drag out his handling of the faith based issue during the 2007 Ontario provincial election, when he suggested funding all faith based schools before reversing his stance.
“Now don’t get me wrong. I think changing your mind once in a while can be a sign of good leadership. But changing your mind all the time is a sign of poor judgment,” she said.
Chow focused on Tory’s transit plan he released last week which proposed a 53-kilometre surface rail line, dubbed the “SmartTrack,” after spending months giving the impression he was advocating for a relief line subway.
“We’ve had enough poor judgment at city hall and Mr. Tory is not the change we need. We need change to do better than that. I will do better than that.”
Chow – a frontrunner in the mayor’s race– referenced Tory’s time as leader of the Ontario PC party to illustrate his indecisiveness.
WATCH: Speaking to the Canadian Club of Toronto Tuesday, Toronto mayoral hopeful Olivia Chow laid out her position on Toronto gridlock
“He supported faith-based schools when he was leader of the Ontario Conservative party, then was forced to take it back,” Chow said
Chow also referenced what she calls flip-flopping on the Scarborough subway plan and on the Eglinton Connects plan.
“He said a subway in Scarborough was barely justifiable then changed his mind,” she said. “He said he’ll scrap the Eglinton Connects street plan, but then he said he wouldn’t. He was all for a subway relief line, then took it back.”
John Tory responded to the criticism saying he’s sticking with his “SmartTrack” proposal as the best way to get Toronto moving.
“If she’s had seven days to look at my smart track proposal that will move people in seven years and not 17 and that’s all she can come up with, it says something about what a good idea it is,” he said. “It’s going to get people around this city. It’s going to provide relief on the Yonge street line and it’s going to do it in seven years.”
Meanwhile, fellow candidate Karen Stintz spent Tuesday speaking about her own initiatives to increase access to green space and highlighted her own transit ideas.
*With files from Jackson Proskow
© Shaw Media, 2014