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Endorsements continue as Hamilton’s mayoral candidates battle to the wire

Andrea Horwath is urging Hamilton voters to reelect Mayor Fred Eisenberger on Monday.
Andrea Horwath is urging Hamilton voters to reelect Mayor Fred Eisenberger on Monday. Ken Mann

The political endorsements continue ahead of Monday’s municipal election in Hamilton.

Ontario New Democratic Party (NDP) Leader and Hamilton Centre MPP Andrea Horwath is the latest to back Mayor Fred Eisenberger and his re-election bid.

Horwath says Hamilton’s light rail transit (LRT) project is “critical to our city,” and continuing “the momentum that overall our city is experiencing, is absolutely crucial.”

READ MORE: Councillor Terry Whitehead throws support behind Hamilton mayoral challenger Vito Sgro

Horwath says it’s the first time she has backed a municipal candidate, but she adds that this election is too important for her to “stand on the sidelines.”

Former Hamilton mayor and current Liberal MP Bob Bratina stepped forward on Thursday to endorse mayoral challenger and LRT opponent Vito Sgro.

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READ MORE: Endorsements are piling up in Hamilton, 5 days ahead of municipal election

Bratina says Sgro’s “success in private business, his extensive knowledge of the political process at all three levels and his passion for Hamilton makes him the best candidate.”

The front-runners in the mayor’s race have also responded to a Forum Research poll which shows them in a virtual dead heat ahead of Monday’s election.

READ MORE: LRT supporters and opponents continue trading punches

The automated telephone survey of 1,556 residents was conducted for the Hamilton Spectator and showed 39 per cent support for Fred Eisenberger while 38 per cent back challenger Vito Sgro.

Other respondents said they will choose another of the 15 mayoral candidates or were undecided. One-third of respondents identified LRT as their top issue.

Eisenberger voiced confidence when asked about the poll results on Friday morning, saying he believes “we have our numbers, we are where we need to be.”

Sgro said he’s felt momentum building over the past 10 to 15 days, adding that the Forum Research findings are “close to the numbers we have actually, so it’s not surprising.”

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